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Take-Two CEO: COVID-19 may make believers out of remote work skeptics in games

"I'm one of them, by the way; I'm not a big believer in remote work," Take-Two Interactive chief Strauss Zelnick said today at a Morgan Stanley event. "But I think I may be surprised."

"One unexpected consequence [of the COVID-19 outbreak] is a lot of us who are skeptical about remote work are gonna be less skeptical about it."

- Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick, speaking today at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference.

Take-Two Interactive chief Strauss Zelnick told an audience at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference today that he expects the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak will make believers out of some remote work skeptics in the game industry.

"I actually think one of the things that might come out of this, if it’s as widespread as I think it will be, one unexpected consequence is a lot of us who are skeptical about remote work are gonna be less skeptical about it," Zelnick said. "I’m one of them, by the way; I’m not a big believer in remote work. But I think I may be surprised."

It's an illuminating response, one that came in answer to a question about whether or not the Take-Two CEO expects game makers working remotely due to COVID-19 concerns will be less productive than they would be in the office. The question specifically referenced Take-Two's staff in California, but it comes right as Bungie, Microsoft, and other companies are making a show of allowing employees to work remotely for an extended period.

"They’re gonna have to find a way to be just as productive at home," said Zelnick. "We have access to technology."

He went on to predict "a significant change, maybe a long-lasting change, in business travel" across the game industry as the COVID-19 outbreak continues and more business is conducted remotely via videoconferencing platforms like Zoom. 

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