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Electronic Arts CEO Riccitiello resigns

Moore favourite to step up

Electronic Arts CEO Riccitiello resigns
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In the midst of media storms surrounding the respective launches of Real Racing 3 and SimCity, Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello has he's leaving the publisher.

According to Riccitiello's resignation letter, his departure was triggered by a failure to meet its financial targets, though he also claimed he was "extremely proud" of the firm's transition to digital games services.

Passing the baton

"EA is an outstanding company with creative and talented employees, and it has been an honour to serve as the Company's CEO," stated Riccitiello.

"I am proud of what we have accomplished together, and after six years I feel it is the right time for me pass the baton and let new leadership take the Company into its next phase of innovation and growth.

"I remain very optimistic about EA's future — there is a world class team driving the Company's transition to the next generation of game consoles."

That digital switchover has both seen the launch of EA's multiplatform games service Origin, and a focus on microtransactions in its mobile releases, such as Real Racing 3.

Indeed, Riccitiello's departure comes a day after EA issued an infographic proclaiming the launch of Firemonkey's iOS racer - the first in the series to be free-to-play – a success, though some commentators remain unconvinced.

Moore Moore Moore

In Riccitiello's place comes former EA CEO and president Larry Probst effectively immediately, though Probst will only serve as executive chairman until the company finds a longterm replacement.

"We thank John for his contributions to EA since he was appointed CEO in 2007, especially the passion, dedication and energy he brought to the Company every single day," said Probst.

"John has worked hard to lead the company through challenging transitions in our industry, and was instrumental in driving our very significant growth in digital revenues. We appreciate John's leadership and the many important strategic initiatives he has driven for the Company.

"We have mutually agreed that this is the right time for a leadership transition."

Commentators have been quick to peg EA's COO Peter Moore – who has previously served as president of Sega of America and corporate VP of Microsoft's entertainment division – as the favourite to take over, though the company itself hasn't set a deadline for any announcement.

[source: EA]