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Microsoft's game platform strategy boss jumps to Amazon

Andre Vrignaud heading to undisclosed role at online retailer

Microsoft's director of game platform strategy, Andre Vrignaud, is leaving his post to join Amazon, taking a position which remains unspecified but is widely considered to be game-related.

Vrignaud was heavily involved in the incubation of the Xbox LIVE service when he joined Microsoft in 2002, but had more recently been working on the Windows Phone 7.

He is believed to be part of Amazon's new drive to increase its digital game distribution sector, a move strongly predicted by Lazard analyst Colin Sebastian earlier this year. Employment advertisements at Amazon were said to indicate that "Amazon.com is developing an exciting new customer experience in video games".

Amazon currently offers several PC titles for download, but recently stopped selling XBLA titles on its website. The company also acquired casual game portal Reflexive in 2008.

Speaking on his blog, Vrignaud wrote about his decision to move on.

"I make this announcement with mixed emotions as I'm excited about where Microsoft is going in the next few years as they look to reinvent digital entertainment... but I'm also obviously very intrigued about what Amazon is looking to do.

"Can't really talk about details at this point, but it'll become pretty evident soon enough... and you all know where my passions lie,"said Vrignaud.

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