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Big Fish Games cuts 15 per cent of its workforce

Layoffs include many executive roles, as the company restructures around casino and casual games

Big Fish Games is cutting 15 per cent of its workforce, in an effort to restructure the company around social casino and casual games.

The details of Big Fish's plans were detailed in an internal memo, which was acquired by Geekwire. In the memo, newly installed managing director Jeff Karp emphasised that the cuts were about, "doing fewer things better, to be bigger."

"We are sharpening our focus to only develop social casino and casual games," he said, "genres where we have earned the right to lead the market."

The job cuts include the departure of several high-level staff: SVP of operations Omar Amin, VP of engineering Steve Galic, VP of studios Pat Wylie, VP of licensing Paul Handelman, and VP of advertising Kathryn Ficarra.

After the cuts, Big Fish Games will have four development studios, a publishing vertical, and a "new cross-functional team that will drive prioritization and enable studios to make great games."

Karp stated that Big Fish maintains a goal of being "a top 10 game company in the world." In July, Geekwire was told that the company had 735 employees in total, 630 of which are based in Seattle.

Big Fish was acquired by the Australian casino firm Aristocrat for $990 million in January this year.

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Matthew Handrahan

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Matthew Handrahan joined GamesIndustry in 2011, bringing long-form feature-writing experience to the team as well as a deep understanding of the video game development business. He previously spent more than five years at award-winning magazine gamesTM.