Namco Bandai to cut 10% of workforce

630 job losses form part of Group Restart Plan aimed at strengthening business after dire nine months

Namco Bandai Games is to decrease its workforce by 10 per cent - a move that will equate to job losses of around 630 staff - as part of a Restart Plan detailed by the company today.

Following the start of a three-year business plan begun in April 2009, the company said that it had re-examined the challenges it faced in achieving future growth in a "prolonged and severe business climate."

"Since the management integration, the Bandai Namco Group has focused on bolstering its Group foundations through organisational restructuring and other efforts to achieve fusion as a new group as quickly as possible," said the company.

"While the consolidation of administrative tasks and other streamlining and cost-cutting efforts at key companies have yielded some results, the Group lost speed on the operational side. We determined that our inability to fully deliver products and services that responded flexibly to the changing market environment and user preferences led to declining profitability."

In response, the Restart Plan - to be launched in April 2010 - will integrate the Group's Games Contents SBU (strategic business unit) with its Visual and Music Content unit, to form a new Content SBU.

Two virtual organisations - the Production Group and Publisher Function - will work to deliver content for platforms in "a speedy fashion", said the company, completing a structure that will allow for enhanced creative functions and increased flexibility.

Specifically, the Publisher Function will enable fast and flexible sales and marketing for content outlets in Japan and overseas, for game software, arcade game machines, mobile contents, video and music software packages and on-demand distribution.

The Namco Bandai Games' Group personnel restructuring plans will take place between now and the third quarter of fiscal 2011, with around 10 per cent of its 7000 staff expected to go. The move will be managed primarily through voluntary retirement, said the company, and is expected to reduce consolidated personnel expenditure in the next fiscal year by approximately ¥3.5bn ($38.6m / £24.2m).

Additional Group-wide cost reductions amounting to ¥8bn ($88.2m / £55.3m) are also expected, through streamlining initiatives and reviews of indirect operations.

Ahead of the Restart Plan, the company also said it planned a review of the structure of its directors to clarify the responsibility of the management.

In order to enhance cooperation across the Group and speed up decision making, the president and representative directors of Bandai Namco Group's three core companies - Bandai Co, Namco Bandai Games and Namco Limited - will serve concurrently as directors of the Group's holding company, Namco Bandai Holdings.

The move comes as Namco today posted losses of ¥11.7bn (£81.3m / $129.5m) for the nine month period ending December 31.

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Latest comments (3)

I wish I had the same confidence that the UK will do that. I talked to Scotland for years and it was like talking to a brick wall. Unless you wanted to employ 400 minimum wage people making Jeans or open a huge call centre they dont want to know. The only place there seems to be anything is in the North East and its not national government, just some local. Quebec gained a huge industry fast (which brought its own issues) and its cash positive for the government. As Mr Brown seems to want to tax all Britains out of existence that tax must go somewhere other than to propping up banks and paying for Politicians' 'expenses' and giving an industry where Britain used to lead the world some real support. Lets face it most of the inventions of the modern world happened here but as usual there was no support so where did they go - overseas. Oh yes, that is what is happening to games. Let's pray that Mr Brown et all are soundly thrashed in May and Mr Cameron understands what an asset to the UK economy games can be and actually puts real money on the table. It would pay in income taxes well in excess of what the devcos claim within 2 years. This I know. Oh and some decent R&D tax credits would work too. Rant over. But lets see if they actually have a brain or understanding of global competition or if they just want to pay lip service to it.
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Private Industry 12 years ago
So much for hoping that 2010 is working out better for people hope all those people have enough time to search for something new before they have to go even if most of them are retirement according to the article. :(

Maybe having a slightly better games lineup would help, the only game I got last year from Namco Bandai was Afro Samurai.

Do they all try to quickly reduce the costs before the next financial year starts?
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If one blinks...before you know it its GDC. In another blink May will come and go.
Meanwhile, some sort of solid coalition of Major & Indie game developers/service providers/press could form a loose coalition to repeatedly lobby the incoming government about the benefits, lucrative creativity of UK's gaming/entertainment industry.
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