Disney confirms layoffs at game division

Jan 26, 2011

(AP) -- The Walt Disney Co. said Tuesday it is laying off employees and hiring an executive as it revamps its video game division to focus on mobile and social games and away from expensive-to-produce console games.

The company didn't say how many people it laid off in the division, which posted its eighth-consecutive quarterly loss in the three months to Oct. 2, losing $104 million on revenue of $188 million

Disney said it had hired Adam Sussman to be senior vice president of publishing for Disney Games. He was formerly Inc.'s vice president of worldwide publishing for mobile. There he was credited with making EA Mobile the top applications publisher on Apple Inc.'s App Store and expanding its presence into more than 65 countries.

Disney said in a statement that the restructuring is "part of setting a strategic direction for future success in the digital media space."

Last week, Disney closed Propaganda Games, the console-game studio behind "Tron: Evolution" and "Pirates of the Caribbean: Armada of the Damned."

Propaganda, founded and then bought by Disney in 2005, was housed in a 30,000-square foot facility in downtown Vancouver.

Disney also laid off some people at its Junction Point studio in Austin, Texas, on Monday. That studio was responsible for creating the console game "Epic Mickey."

Disney shares fell 8 cents to close at $39.86 on Tuesday.

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