Chillingo Founders Latest to Leave EA
It's been a weird and wild week for EA and its partners. Now, after the founders of PopCap and Criterion have left the company, the men who founded Chillingo follow suit.
Chris Byatte and Joe Wee are stepping away from the company they helped form based on a report from MCV. After helping launch Angry Birds and Cut the Rope, EA snapped up Chillingo for $20 million, and the company has continued to pump out mobile titles for the publisher ever since. Byatte and Wee maintained roles as director and general manager respectively, but it's unclear at this time how their departure will affect Chillingo.
With Byatte and Wee leaving, EA has now lost the founders of three partner companies. Criterion's Alex Ward and Fiona Sperry will be departing as soon as their contracts are up. Dave Roberts and Jason Kapalka from PopCap will also no longer be a part of EA's or PopCap's future. This kind of turnover isn't unheard of in the industry, but to have three sets of high-profile leaders walk in the same week isn't something we typically see happen.
It'll be worth monitoring EA and its partners in the coming weeks to see how these changes and transitions affect the various brands and franchises, not to mention the developers themselves.