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Big Fish closes Vancouver studio, lays off 49 staff

Casual and mobile games developer Big Fish is shuttering its Vancouver studio in order to consolidate operations. 49 employees face layoffs while a further 70 are to be "realigned" at another office.
Casual games developer Big Fish is shuttering its Vancouver studio, reports GamesIndustry International. 49 workers -- nine percent of the company's workforce -- have been let go, while a further 70 or so are to be "realigned." The Vancouver studio closure is part of a move to consolidate under its Seattle office. The consolidation may also affect its Cork, Ireland office "subject to a 30-day consultation that we are entering into with employees." In a letter to the company, Big Fish CEO Paul Thelen also announced that John Holland would be stepping up as president and chief operating officer, while previous president Dave Stephenson would be taking a position outside the company. "We had to make some very hard choices about these business areas that are not growing or profitable," Thelen tells employees in his letter to staff. "I want to stress that our decisions are not based on our company-wide performance or that of the people working on those initiatives -- both of which are strong -- but because of where the market is growing, and quite frankly, where it is not." "The most significant decision we are making today is that we are discontinuing our premium cloud delivery business," Thelen continues, adding that the company "will evaluate" which languages to continue to support through localization. "We are making these adjustments from a position of strength, not weakness, and I am confident that our best days are ahead," Thelen concludes.

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