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NBCUniversal is closing its game publishing division

NBCUniversal is closing its game publishing division

September 19, 2019 | By Chris Kerr

NBCUniversal is shuttering its game publishing division after just over two years, resulting in an unknown number of layoffs. 

As reported by VentureBeat, the Comcast-owned company intends to keep one foot in the video game market by licensing its various entertainment properties to external developers and publishers. 

Titles published by the company include Jurassic World Alive, which has pulled in an estimated $60 million in lifetime revenue, Turok: Escape from Lost Valley, and Voltron: Cubes of Olkarion.

It's unclear how many staff members have been laid off as a result of the closure, although the company has confirmed that Chris Heatherly, the EVP of games and digital platforms at Universal Brand Development (UBD), will be let go at the end of the year following a "transition period."

In a statement sent to VentureBeat, a NBCUniversal spokesperson explained the closure was down to the "increasingly competitive nature of the mobile games landscape," but that it would be seeking out opportunities that don't require self-publishing. 

"[Moving away from self-publishing] will allow UBD to deepen their licensing and partnership opportunities across all gaming platforms. As a result of this shift, the team has undergone a restructuring to be better positioned for long-term success," it reads.

"Based on our recent organizational re-alignment, we’re working with our development partners on alternative publishing paths for some of the games in our mobile portfolio. Specific details for each title will be announced at a later date."

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