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Global layoffs at Gameloft as staff in Ukraine and Canada confirm redundancies

At least 38 staff are leaving their Lviv, Ukraine office with as yet unconfirmed numbers departing Toronto, Canada
Global layoffs at Gameloft as staff in Ukraine and Canada confirm redundancies
  • The company currently operates 18 studios worldwide but so far only their facilities at Toronto and Lviv have been reported as being affected
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French-based developer and publisher Gameloft is currently laying off staff at their Toronto, Canada and Lviv, Ukraine offices with at least 38 staff leaving the company across multiple departments.

The company currently operates 18 studios worldwide but so far only their facilities at Toronto and Lviv have been reported as being affected.

Speaking to Gamedev.dou, Tetyana Zadorozhna, HR Communication Specialist at Gameloft's Lviv studio said, “Gameloft has been supporting Ukraine since the first days. Each of the studios here has already demonstrated its resilience and professionalism many times, especially during the last two years of the military conflict. However, taking into account market conditions, the company is forced to optimize resources and rationalize some projects at the company level. Unfortunately, this led to the reduction of 38 employees, but the studios in Kharkiv and Lviv remain key players in the development of Gameloft games."

The move within Ukraine is timed alongside the return of demobilized military personnel leaving the army and returning to their former roles within the Lviv office.

"Next month, former employees will return to the Lviv studio after demobilization. We've been in touch with them throughout and are happy to see them back in our team," added a Gameloft representative.

Currently 600 staff work at Gameloft’s offices in Kharkiv and Lviv. At the time of writing layoffs are only reported within the Lviv office.

The inside track

Writing on LinkedIn Victoria Sinyakova, a QA Engineer at GlobalLogic, gave the inside story.

“My husband Igor Sinyakov has been working for Gameloft Lviv as a QA Engineer for four years. Last week, he had a 1-2-1 meeting where he was praised for his dedication and performance and told that a salary raise will be requested for him when possible. Instead, this Monday, he was called into a meeting to "discuss work processes''. Turned out, the purpose of this meeting was to inform the attendees that they are fired. This included my husband, all of his team, and some other people, resulting in 40 loyal employees losing their job.

“Some of my husband's teammates still had scheduled 1-2-1 meetings that day which were obviously canceled after this happened. This was a massive shock for everyone, myself included, from which I have not yet recovered. We are going through tough times right now, as it is not that easy to find a job in Ukraine these days. I kindly ask to spread this information to help my husband find a job. He's looking for remote positions, and we also have all the equipment to work from home during power cuts.”

Another Lviv employee, game programmer Andrea Osorio Aguilar writes, “Today the project I was working on got cancelled and I was affected by the recent layoffs at Gameloft.I find myself looking for a new role as a Game Programmer and would appreciate your support. The current situation of the industry is hard enough for everyone so this sadly has affected lots of really talented and passionate people.”

Layoffs in Canada too

However, it seems that it’s not just Gameloft’s interests in the Ukraine that are being affected. As part of a larger, global restructuring Gameloft are also letting staff go at their Toronto, Canada office with the cutbacks there being described as “brutal”.

While there is as yet no official word or numbers on the Toronto redundancies, Gameloft PR gave us the following statement.

“After careful consideration and in response to the ever-changing market conditions we are facing, it has become necessary to implement a reduction in workforce. As a company, we need to constantly review our production capacities, and this decision was not made lightly.”

It appers that multiple departments are being affected and staff have again been taking to LinkedIn to tell their side.

“To the Artists affected by the Gameloft Toronto layoffs, if we worked together feel free to put me down as your reference.” wrote art director and manager Ewan L.

“Today was brutal. I'm going to keep it professional and just wish much love to everyone affected by the layoffs at Gameloft Toronto. Both those who received them and also to the ones who had to deliver the message. It's been an honor and privilege to work with such a talented, yet unfailingly kind team.” writes game programmer Stephen Hill.

And the move seems to have taken the company by surprise. One member of staff, Alok Gaikwad, technical artist at Gameloft Toronto, is now looking for work despite starting at the company just one month ago.