Disney Interactive Could Be Laying Off Half Its Employees

There’s a big shake-up going on at Disney right now, and it could be having massive consequences for the 700 employees at Disney Interactive Studios, as well as those at subsidiary Junction Point Studios.

Variety is reporting that Disney might be laying off as many as half its employs at Disney Interactive in a move to go all-digital, rather than selling packaged goods. That follows big changes in upper management, as Disney Interactive replaced former head Steve Wadsworth with Yahoo exec jimmy Pitaro and social game maker Playdom’s CEO John Pleasants in September. Graham Hopper, the head of Disney’s gaming division for eight years, also left the company last year.

Disney acquired Playdom, formerly the third-largest social game maker behind Zynga and Playfish,  for $763 million last year. Between that purchase and the company acquiring iPhone game maker Tapulous, the makers of Tap Tap Revolution, Disney has been signalling a move to all-digital for a while now.

Meanwhile, Junction Point, the maker of the critically “mehDisney Epic Mickey, could also be facing lots of layoffs, according to a report from CNBC — despite the fact that Epic Mickey moved 1.5 million units. That follows Disney shutting down Propaganda Games, the developer behind the commercially weak TRON: Evolution, just last week.

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