Marketers face axe at games publisher

SCi Entertainment Group’s marketing department faces an uncertain future after the Tomb Raider publisher announced it was slashing a quarter of its staff in a restructure.

The troubled computer gaming company’s central marketing team could be axed in favour of a number of smaller units operating in “studios” around the world as part of the bid to stay afloat.

The company says having “a centralised brand and product marketing team, often in a different country and time zone, is not the right formula for the creation of high quality games”.

Instead it says it is shifting its “key publishing responsibilities” including marketing into studio units built around its products, which include the Tomb Raider series of games.

These studios will be based in the UK, US, Denmark and Canada. Each will be responsible for the creation, marketing and sale of their games.

The company, which purchased gaming brand Eidos in 2005, has already axed 14 titles that is said would not prove profitable enough, and the latest Tomb Raider title has been delayed.

SCi will also create a new unit, called Eidos Play, to capitalise on the growing casual and mobile phone games market.

Chief executive Phil Rogers took over in January following the ousting of founder and chief executive Jane Cavanagh and her husband, Bill Ennis. Rogers says the firm needs an extra £55m to survive.

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