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Tjodolf Sommestad becomes new president of King

Co-founder Sebastian Knutsson stepping down from CCO role
Tjodolf Sommestad becomes new president of King

Candy Crush creator King has revealed a series of changes to its leadership, one of which being the promotion of a new president.

Tjodolf Sommestad, who has been at King for more than a decade, is taking over from Humam Sakhnini, who himself has spent six years at King and 12 years at its parent company Activision Blizzard.

Most recently, Sommestad has worked as CEO, leading King’s game studios and technology teams. Prior to this, he was the senior vice president for the Candy Crush franchise.

"Tjodolf is an exceptional leader who has played a central role in driving the continued growth and development of our mobile games franchises," Activision Blizzard president and COO Daniel Alegre said.

"He brings a wealth of experience in innovation, technology, and games development. Working alongside an expanded leadership team, I am confident King will be able to sustain its growth while serving its player community with the enduring delight of its games."

Moving up

"I’m delighted to be taking over as the new president of King - a business I’ve been proud to be part of for more than a decade," said Sommestad.

"After breaking revenue records in 2021, we expect to build on this momentum through a continued focus on building playful player experiences across our live franchises, so we can continue to delight our players and make the world more playful," Sommestad said.

"Thanks to Humam’s leadership and the fantastic work and dedication of our teams, the business is in a position of financial and creative strength, setting the stage for King’s next level of growth."

Sakhnini commented: "I'm excited about King's next chapter under Tjodolf's leadership. He is a tremendously talented leader who will continue to drive innovation in our franchises."

Succession strategy

Company co-founder Sebastian Knutsson is also stepping down from his role as CCO as part of a long-term succession strategy. He will be working closely with Sommestad until the end of March, lending support in his transition to King president effective immediately.

"From our humble start-up beginnings 19 years ago to today, I have been proud of the fun we've delivered players through a focus on creativity and innovation. It has truly been a tremendous journey, and I look forward to seeing what is next for King," said Knutsson.

Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick added: "I want to thank Humam Sakhnini and Sebastian Knutsson. I have greatly valued my partnership over these twelve years with Humam. He was instrumental in both the acquisition of Blizzard and King, and our Company has been fortunate for his contributions.

"Sebastian helped create an entire industry bringing gaming to hundreds of millions of new players around the world. He is a pioneer and visionary, and we are grateful for the passion and creativity he inspired within King."

In other job news, Riot Games recently appointed Marc Merrill as its president of games, overseeing all current and future projects.