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PlayStation names Hermen Hulst and Hideaki Nishino as its new CEOs

Hulst will lead the Studios business, while Nishino takes charge of the platform side

Hermen Hulst and Hideaki Nishino will jointly succeed Jim Ryan as the CEOs of Sony Interactive Entertainment.

Hulst is CEO of the newly named Studio Business Group, which includes all of PlayStation’s first-party teams, plus covers the development of PlayStation IP onto other mediums, such as TV and film. Hulst was already head of PlayStation Studios. He was previously the co-founder of Horizon and Killzone developer Guerrilla Games, which was acquired by Sony in 2005.

"I am thrilled to lead the studio business group and continue to build on our success with PlayStation 5, while preparing for the future,” Hulst said in a statement. “The video game industry is one of the largest entertainment industries in the world and has been built on the marriage of content and technology, and I look forward to continuing to push the boundaries of play and entertainment.”

Hideaki Nishino will lead the Platform Business Group, which includes console hardware, technology, accessories, PlayStation Network and third-party relations (covering major publishers and indie studios). He was already SVP of Platform Experiences. He’s been part of the Sony business since 2006, holding numerous roles at Sony Network Entertainment, Sony Corporation and SIE.

"We will continue to connect players and creators through world-class products, services, and technology," Nishino said. "We always strive to grow our community even bigger with innovation in every area at Sony Interactive Entertainment.”

"I am honored to be appointed such an important role alongside Hermen. By working more closely together, we will be positioned to build incredible experiences for an ever-expanding audience now and in the future."

Both leaders will report to Sony Interactive Entertainment chairman Hiroki Totoki, who has been acting CEO of the division since Jim Ryan stepped down from the role at the end of March. Totoki is also president, COO and CFO of Sony Group Corporation. The latest changes will take effect from June 1st.

“Sony Interactive Entertainment is a dynamic and growing business that delivers incredible entertainment experiences through the connection of content and technology," Totoki said. "These two leaders will have clear responsibilities and will manage strategic direction to ensure the focus remains on deepening engagement with existing PlayStation users and expanding experiences to new audiences."

The fact both new CEOs are established PlayStation veterans is in-keeping with Sony’s approach of promoting from within. However, the decision to have two leaders is not something the business has done before and reflects the growing size and scale of the division.

PlayStation’s Studios business has grown exponentially over the past ten years, both in terms of headcount and scale of its brands. Its recent strategy has seen it port more of its titles to PC, develop TV shows and movies based on its IP and push into live-service game development, which included the acquisition of Destiny developer Bungie in 2022.

However, costs have also grown significantly, resulting in recent game cancellations, staff redundancies and the closure of its London Studio. The release detailing the new leadership says that this structure is designed to deliver 'sustainable growth'.

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Christopher Dring: Chris is a 17-year media veteran specialising in the business of video games. And, erm, Doctor Who
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