As the gaming industry continues to inexorably bleed jobs in what seems to be an annus horribilis for employment, Amazon has laid off over 180 employees from its games division.
As reported by The Verge, the layoffs were confirmed by a memo signed by VP of Amazon Games Christoph Hartmann.
The operation includes the shutdown of the retail giant’s Crown Twitch channel, and the Game Growth initiative, dedicated to help creator promote their games.
According to the memo, the layoffs were decided with the goal of refocusing the company’s resources on areas that are growing and have the “highest potential to drive the business forward.” One such area mentioned is Amazon Prime Gaming.
According to Hartmann, Amazon has “listened to its customers” and learned that the delivery of free games monthly is what they want the most, which is prompting the company to “refine its Prime benefit” and increase focus on that field.
The 180 layoffs are motivated by changes made to resourcing derived from that switch in business approach.
Employees affected by the layoffs are said to be receiving severance pay, outplacement services, health insurance benefits, and more, alongside a licensed counselor available 24/7 through the Employee Assistance Program.
Hartmann admitted that this is the second round of layoffs affecting the company, but mentioned that Amazon is focusing on upcoming launches for Throne and Liberty and Blue Protocol, and future projects like theTomb Raider and The Lord of the Rings games, alongside projects with Glowmade and Disruptive Games.
On top of that, he added that Amazon’s internal studios are hiring to fill critical roles as they continue developing new IPs.
He concluded by vowing that the company is committed to its vision of becoming “one of the leading developers and publishers of high-quality games” and arguing that focusing resources accordingly will help achieve that goal.