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Ubisoft's chief people officer Anika Grant departs after 2-year tenure
Grant joined Ubisoft months after the studio was rocked with sexual misconduct allegations, and assigned to transform its troubled HR department.
October 31, 2023
2 Min Read
Image via Ubisoft.
At the end of November, Ubisoft will lose Anika Grant, its two-year chief people officer. Per GamesIndustry, CEO Yves Guillemot revealed she would be leaving to "pursue new opportunity" in a staff-wide email earlier today.
Grant was brought on in 2021 to head up the developer's global recruitment drive, along with talent management and leadership development (among other duties). Her hiring came months after the French studio faced allegations of inappropriate conduct from high-level staff and made a subsequent promise to improve its culture.
In that email, Guillemot called her "instrumental in leading the transformation of Ubisoft's human resources and talent management function. [...] We warmly thank her for her many contributions."
"[Grant] and her team implemented consequential changes and programs that greatly contributed to fostering a safe, respectful, and inclusive working environment in which all Ubisoft team members can thrive and realize their full potential."
He added that Ubisoft would prepare a "smooth transition" before then ahead of the hire of a new, currently unnamed CPO.
Ubisoft's image change is hard to determine
The effects of Ubisoft's years-long troubled behavior are reportedly still being felt. Within the last year, several studios have openly suffered from crunch and mismanagement, with some studios (like the Montpellier branch) being investigated by French authorities on labor charges.
Last year, it was claimed developers actively wanted no involvement with Assassin's Creed Red due to the involvement of creative director Jonathan Dumont. The 10-year veteran was one of many developers explicitly named as an offender in the 2020 allegations against Ubisoft.
In summer 2022, members of the pro-worker group A Better Ubisoft claimed the publisher hadn't yet met its demands on how to improve company culture. Over a year since that declaration, the group hasn't made any indication that things have changed in either direction.
At the start of October, a number of ex-Ubisoft executives (who left or were terminated following the initial allegations) were arrested and detained for questioning on charges of misconduct. Among those arrested were ex-CCO Serge Hascoët and his alleged protege, then-editorial VP Tommy François.
About the Author(s)
Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com
A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.
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