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14 - 16 April 2021

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EA sees Chillingo founders depart

EA has confirmed the latest set of studio founders to leave the company

Following a report from MCV, Electronic Arts has confirmed to GamesIndustry International that Chillingo founders Chris Byatte and Joe Wee have left the company. Founded back in 2005, Chillingo is known for having launched two of the biggest properties in mobile gaming: Angry Birds and Cut the Rope.

"Joe and Chris have left Chillingo and EA. We wish them well with their future endeavors," an EA spokesman told us. A reason for the pair's departure from EA was not given, and it's currently unclear exactly what impact the move will have on the studio going forward. [Update: EA has provided us with the additional following statement: "Chillingo and the 100% Indie initiative continues to partner with the world's most talented indie developers and publish great new titles, including hits like Fightback and Feed Me Oil 2."]

Chillingo was acquired by EA in 2010 for about $20 million. At the time, Byatte and Wee remained in their positions as director and general manager.

The loss of Byatte and Wee today is now the third time that a studio's founders have moved on from EA during the last week, after Dave Roberts and Jason Kapalka decided to leave PopCap, and the founders at Criterion - Alex Ward and Fiona Sperry - elected to form a new company.

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Latest comments (5)

Paul Jace Merchandiser 7 years ago
What is this, a mass exodus of founders leaving EA? Why now and who's next?
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Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 7 years ago
Couldn't tell you "who's next", but no doubt the answer to "why now" is that the clause stipulating to remain with the company for X amount of time after EA's acquisition has run its course. Staff members are now free to leave if they so wish. (6 staff members leaving 3 EA acquired studios in the first couple of weeks of the new year? Not suspicious at all.)
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people leave jobs on the new year in the main
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Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 7 years ago
It is unbelievable the amount of money EA have spent to buy talent, only for that talent to walk away.
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Depends if its a case of cultural changes within a corporate structure
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