San Francisco-based prominent video game software provider Unity Software announced on Monday its plans to reduce its workforce by approximately 25%, affecting around 1,800 employee roles. This move is part of a larger strategy to refocus on its core business and establish a foundation for long-term, profitable growth.
While the exact financial implications are yet unclear, the company expects substantial charges relating to this downsizing to be incurred primarily in the first quarter of 2024. These costs will mainly cover employee transition, severance payments, and related benefits.
According to a Reuters report, this is Unity’s fourth round of layoff since July last year and the largest ever. Additionally, all teams, regions and areas of the Unity’s business will be affected by the latest layoffs that will likely conclude by March end. The report further pointed out that this announcement came after a series of tumultuous events for Unity. In the latter part of 2022, the company faced backlash over its proposed “runtime fee” pricing policy, which led to a significant drop in share prices and a subsequent policy revamp. This period also saw the retirement of then-CEO John Riccitiello and the appointment of Jim Whitehurst, former IBM president, as interim CEO.
The layoffs are part of a “company reset” initiative spearheaded by Whitehurst, aimed at streamlining operations and refocusing on Unity’s primary market. This reset, which began in November, has reportedly already witnessed several significant changes, including the termination of certain partnerships and a shift away from mandatory office-based work.
Unity, founded nearly two decades ago by three Danish engineers, has gained substantial traction in the gaming industry with its versatile game engine. The platform is widely used for creating video games, simulations, and other interactive content. It is known for its versatility, allowing developers to create 2D, 3D, virtual reality, and augmented reality experiences. Unity’s user-friendly interface, comprehensive set of tools, and support for a wide range of platforms make it a popular choice among developers, from indie game creators to large gaming studios. According to the Reuters report, over 1.1 million game creators, including popular “Pokemon Go,” “Beat Saber” and “Hearthstone” games, rely on Unity’s software toolkit each month.