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Jobs Roundup: October 2022 | Embracer Freemode adds Activision alum Brian Bright to leadership

UPDATE: Keyword names Jon Hauck as chief operating officer and Frank Sagnier joins Steel City Interactives board

It can be difficult keeping track of the various comings and goings in the games industry, which is why we compile them in semi-regular round-ups.

If you have new appointments or transitions in your company that belong here, please send the names of the appointees, new role and company, and prior role and company to newhires@gamesindustry.biz.

Brian Bright | Principal design director, Embracer Freemode

Long-time game developer Brian Bright has joined Embracer Freemode as principal design director.

Bright's work history in the game's industry includes a 25-year stint at Activision Blizzard.

His game credits include serving as principal designer for 2019's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. He also worked as game director on the Tony Hawk and Guitar Hero franchises.

"With a progressive attitude that serves the gaming community first, I'm delighted to join the leadership team and look forward to putting my skillset to work as part of the Freemode family," said Bright.

Jon Hauck

Jon Hauck | Chief operating officer, Keywords Studios

Keywords has announced that Jon Hauck has been promoted to chief operating officer.

In his new role, Hauck will be responsible for overseeing the business performance and growth of the firm's service divisions. He will also continue to head the M&A strategies for the group.

Hauck originally joined Keywords in 2019 as chief financial officer and has served as interim COO since March 2022. Until his replacement is found, he will continue serving as chief financial officer before shifting to his new position.

"I am delighted that Jon has agreed to take on this new role. He has been an exceptional CFO since he joined over three years ago and, in that time, has developed a deep knowledge of the business…" said Keywords CEO Bertrand Bodson.

Frank Sagnier

Frank Sagnier | non-executive chair of the board, Steel City Interactive

Frank Sagnier has been appointed as Steel City Interactive's non-executive chair of the board.

He brings with him a career history of 25 years in the gaming industry. His career includes a 7-year stint at Codemasters as CEO.

Sagnier's history also includes him serving as EA's vice president of digital publishing in Europe, he was with the gaming firm for 8 years.

"This growth has brought new opportunities that Frank is ideally placed to help us maximize," said Steel City co-founder and creative director Ash Habib.

"His knowledge and expertise have already helped us shape the vision of the studio and 'Undisputed'. We're delighted to have him in our corner."

Osama Dorias

Osama Dorias | Lead content designer, Blizzard Entertainment

Video game publisher Blizzard Entertainment has hired veteran game designer Osama Dorias as lead content designer.

Dorias has worked at gaming firms such as Ubisoft, WB Games Montreal, and Unity. He also taught game design and served as coordinator of video game programs at Dawson College.

His career in the games industry also includes a six-year stint at Gameloft, where he worked on quest design, narrative development, and scriptwriting.

"Hello friends! I'm happy to share that I'm starting a new position as lead content designer at Blizzard Entertainment," he said in the appointment announcement.

Fingersoft makes additions to its leadership and board

Left to right, Teemu Väisänen, Mika Reini

Mobile game developer Fingersoft has promoted Teemu Väisänen to game development technical director and Mika Reini has joined its board of directors.

Väisänen brings with him a career of over 14 years of working within the games industry. He joined Fingersoft in 2019 and prior to his new role he served as a lead programmer.

"I have extensive experience in technical and artistic aspects of game development, which brings a unique vision and know-how. Artists' tools and the implementation of their visions are close to my heart," Väisänen said.

Reini's work history spans more than 20 years, which includes a 17-year stint as chief financial officer at Remedy Entertainment. In recent years he's pivoted to investment and advisory roles.

He was a board member for companies such as Redhill Games and multimedia studio Nopia.

"I can honestly say that it has been a while since I have been looking forward to something as much as I am looking forward to this," Reini explained.

Reflector Entertainment updates its executive team

Left to right, Christophe Rossignol, Emilie Constantineau, Marc-André Séguin

Multimedia entertainment studio Reflector Entertainment has announced three new promotions for its executive team.

Marc-André Séguin has been promoted to general manager, Emilie Constantineau has taken on the role of talent and culture director. Meanwhile Christophe Rossignol will now serve as creative director.

Séguin's professional history includes working as a HR business partner at Ubisoft. He also had a four-year stint at financial services provider Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton. He was a senior director at the firm prior to joining Reflector.

Throughout Constantineau's career she's served as a HR advisor at various companies and organizations. Before her new directorial role, she worked as a senior business partner of organizational development at Reflector.

Prior to Rossignol being hired by Reflector in 2017, he held various level designer leadership roles at Ubisoft. Throughout his 12 years at the game publisher, he worked on titles such as Far Cry 5, Watch Dogs, and Assassin's Creed Syndicate.

Chris Filip

Chris Filip | International business development manager for the UK Global Screen Fund, BFI

The British Film Institute has named Chris Filip as international business development manager for the UK Global Screen Fund.

He will oversee the assessment of companies' business plans and analyze international company growth.

Filip joins after serving as program and product manager for Creative UK. Throughout his work history he's held various roles such as working as a game designer at Funtaptic, a freelance producer for BAFTA, and co-founding non-profit Game Anglia.

"I am happy to be joining the BFI at this critical junction in the screen industries' future, where more than ever there is a need to grow the UK's international exports and deepen relationships," Filip said.

Brooke Grabrian

Brooke Grabrian | Global Head of People, Bitkraft Ventures

Venture capital firm Bitkraft Ventures has announced Brooke Grabrian as its new head of people.

Grabrian has spent over 20 years in the games industry, including a 14 year stint at 2K, where she led recruitment initiatives, building out development teams behind franchises such as NBA2K, WWE, Bioshock and more.

In the new role, Grabrian will lead portfolio support for Bitkraft's talent, culture and human resources areas.

"As Global Head of People at Bitkraft, I have the unique opportunity to leverage my years of experience in the games industry as well as my passion for guiding startups in their pursuit of building healthy, high-performing teams," Grabrian said regarding her appointment.

"Being at the inception of teams is the through-line of my career and I’m excited to serve and learn from the over 100 companies in Bitkraft's global portfolio."

Jonathan Morin | Creative Director, NetEase Games Montreal

Jonathan Morin

NetEase Games Montreal has tapped Watch Dogs creator Jonathan Morin as its new creative director.

Morin is best known for his role as creative director on Watch Dogs, Watch Dogs 2 and Watch Dogs: Legion, and also worked as a developer on other projects at Ubisoft Montreal.

"I am excited to announce my new adventure as Creative Director at NetEase Games Montreal," Morin said. "I am privileged to join a passionate and talented new team to create our own IP. This is the beginning of something special for me and I cannot wait to say more."

Jacob Kruger | User Acqusition Director, FunPlus

Jacob Kruger

Mobile studio Funplus has hired industry veteran Jacob Kruger as user acquisitions director.

Kruger has worked in the mobile space for over a decade, most recently as head of user acquisition at Miniclip, and in the same role at Scopely before that.

"Jacob's extensive experience and knowledge of UA and Marketing will be invaluable for us in Barcelona, especially when accessing new audiences and exploring new opportunities for both our players and our games," said FunPlus VP of publishing for Europe and Latin America, Enric Cabestany. "Our goal is to continue to hire more exceptionally talented people to lead us forward in becoming a key actor on the Barcelona tech scene."

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