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August's Mobile Movers and Shakers: Damian Burns leaves Twitch plus new hires for Epic Games, FunPlus, Newzoo and more

August has already seen some significant moves by some of the industry's biggest company's - here's the highlights from the last week
August's Mobile Movers and Shakers: Damian Burns leaves Twitch plus new hires for Epic Games, FunPlus, Newzoo and more
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As 2023 races by, something we’ve been eager to cover more of is the vast movement in jobs taking place at the moment. The mobile game industry is huge, growing and strong as usual, so there's a lot to keep track of. Whether that’s new board members, executives or key team members, knowing who’s going where and doing what is key to understanding the industry.

That’s where this series of – hopefully many - articles covering hires, moves and more that are taking place across mobile gaming. We’ll give a brief overview of who these people are, what they’re doing and why we’ve added them to this week’s recap. Starting off today with…


FunPlus welcomes Alexandre Amancio as SVP & Head of World Building & IP Strategy

The industry veteran’s previous roles include input into several critically acclaimed titles, such as acting as the creative director for two games in the blockbuster Assassin’s Creed series before founding his own development studio Reflector Entertainment.

In his new position, Amancio will play a key role in Funplus’s efforts to pursue its cross-platform strategy and achieve its IP development goals. Amancio brings more than 20 years of experience to the new role, and will work closely with FunPlus’ development teams across Europe and Asia from his base in Portugal.

“Alex’s experience and knowledge of working on AAA IP and within a number of highly-regarded creative enterprises is perfectly aligned with FunPlus’ ambitions for the future,” said FumPlus chief business officer Chris Petrovic. “FunPlus has ambitions to become one of the biggest entertainment companies in the world, with IP at the heart of that goal. Alex’s role in leading our world-building and content strategy is key to our future success and we’re delighted to have him on board.”

Read the full story of his appointment here.

Epic Games appoint Christopher Pfeiffer to the post of Director of Product Management at Epic Games

Christopher Pfeiffer is the new Director of Product Management at Epic Games having previously been Executive Producer at Jagex managing the publishing platform, utilized by RuneScape, Old School RuneScape. He guided the team's transformation from a service group into a product development team, driving forward initiatives related to game distribution, accounts, e-commerce, game services, and marketing tech.

Previous to that he was Senior Director of Product Management at the same company, participating in a wide range of strategic initiatives, and is an ex Executive Producer at Wargaming being responsible for ownership of their ambitious game exploration activity and numerous prototyping efforts.

He was also an Executive Producer at Kabam and was the CEO and co-founder of Victory Lap games prior to their acquisition by Wargaming.

He shared the news of his appointment via LinkedIn here.

Newzoo promotes Emma McDonald into the C-Suite as new Chief Operating Officer

Formerly, Director of Marketing, Emma joined the Newzoo team nearly 11 years ago and rose through the company in the analyst and client success teams before leading the marketing department for seven years. At Newzoo, she has supported games industry clients, including Facebook, Amazon, and YouTube, and recently earned her MBA at IE Business School.

Emma will implement and improve company policies in her new role, including organizational structure, processes, and mentoring for the 100-strong global team.

Emma succeeds Newzoo Co-Founder Thijs Hagoort as COO, who will now act as a formal Adviser to the company. She joins Michelle Rouhof, CEO, and Darcy de Bood, CFO, in the C-Suite.

The company issued an official press release here.

Abu Dhabi Gaming appoints Haya AlQadi as Gaming & Esport Community Unit Head

Working under the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi AlQuadi will be working to create new and memorable esport events within the region and was previously one of Business Insider’s top 23 women in gaming, esports and streaming for 2021.

Previously AlQuadi was in charge of Creative Marketing for Galaxy Racer and Commercial Executive with Live Nation Entertainment.

“Being part of the gaming community development space is an honor and one that is close to my heart. I look forward to working with the game changers of our space,” she writes.

AlQuadi shared the news via a LinkedIn post here.

Ace Games appoints Saikala Sultanova as SVP of Marketing at Ace Games

Ace Games, the Istanbul-based makers of Fiona’s Farm have recruited Saikala Sultanova as their new SVP of Marketing. The company say, “We are set to build genre-defining games. To achieve our goal, we keep building a young, talented, dedicated team and creating the best environment to realize its potential.” While Sultanova comments “I am thrilled to join the vision to make games that are played by everyone around the world.”

Previously Sultanova worked as VP of Growth at virtual fashion app and platform DREST, Senior Director of UA & Growth at Product Madness and Director of User Acquisition, Mobile
for Ubisoft.

She shared the news of her appointment via LinkedIn post here.

Damian Burns leaves his role as Senior Vice President/GM of Twitch

“After almost four years leading Twitch in Europe, it is with mixed emotions that I share the news of my departure to pursue an exciting new chapter elsewhere,” writes Burns. “I couldn't be more proud of what our teams achieved and the incredible successes of the past four years. I will continue cheering on my wonderful, gifted Twitch and Amazon colleagues from the sidelines and look forward to their continued success.

“I hope to continue crossing paths with industry peers via my role at Bregal Milestone, a leading growth capital firm, partnering with the founders and owners of Europe’s high-growth technology companies to help them scale and thrive.”

Previous Burns was Managing Director, Gaming at Meta, Global Head of Sales, Atlas by Facebook, Director of Global Strategic Partnerships at Google and Head of Digital at Zed Media.

Two Desperados gain Teodora Janku as new QA Engineer

Two Desperados, the player-centric game development studio based in Belgrade, Serbia and creators of Woka Woka, Viola's Quest and Nono Crossing have expanded their QA department with the appointment of Teodora Janku as QA Engineer.

“My curiosity and drive to learn led me to explore web and game development in my spare time. Through this exploration, I discovered the world of software testing, which has become my true calling,” she writes

Janku shared the news of her appointment via a LinkedIn post here.

If you know of any mobile games industry job news that you think should be here, then don't hesitate to reach out to us at editorial@steelmedianetwork.com