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Sony streamlines operations, leading to a global workforce reduction of 900 employees

What just happened? Sony Interactive Entertainment has announced plans to trim its global workforce by roughly eight percent, or around 900 people. SIE President and CEO Jim Ryan said the industry has changed immensely, and after discussing with the leadership team about the evolving economic landscape and changes in how they develop, distribute, and launch products, it was clear that organizational changes needed to be made to ensure the business continues to grow and develop.

The goal, Ryan said in a company wide e-mail, is to streamline resources to guarantee long-term success and continue to deliver experiences that gamers and creators have come to expect.

Job cuts will impact employees across all SIE regions including the Americas, EMEA, Japan, and APAC. Ryan said Sony has also proposed shutting down PlayStation Studios’ London Studio and reducing the headcount at Firesprite, a UK studio.

“Proposed changes mean that we will enter a period of collective consultation before any final decisions are taken,” the e-mail notes, which is technically just a formality to comply with local laws.

In the US, impacted staffers will be notified of their employment status today. Next career support services will be offered to those in Japan. All affected employees will receive severance benefits, Ryan added.

Bloomberg additionally reported that a live-service Twisted Metal game had also been canceled as part of the restructuring. The game was still in the very early stages and had not officially been greenlit, the publication said.

Sony joins a growing list of video game companies that have reduced their headcount in recent memory.

Just this week, British game developer Supermassive Games announced a restructuring that would involve laying off some of its employees. In January, Microsoft said goodbye to 1,900 employees from Activision Blizzard, ZeniMax, and Xbox. According to industry estimates, some 6,500 video game workers lost their jobs in 2023.

The video game industry thrived during the pandemic, when millions of people around the world found themselves stuck at home and in need of entertainment. Now that things have mostly returned back to normal and folks generally have less time for gaming, the industry has had to adjust.

Image credit: Alexey Savchenko

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