PopCap Announces Staff Layoffs

It’s been a mixed couple of days for PopCap Games. Earlier in the week they announced a sequel to the ever-popular title Plants vs Zombies. This morning, however, the company informed its employees of an internal reorganisation that includes the laying off of about fifty staff members as well as the reevaluation of its Dublin office.

In a blog post on the company’s website, PopCap co-founder John Vechey explained the reasons for this course of action, citing the dramatic changes in the industry: “The change in consumer tastes requires us to reorganize our business and invest in new types of games on new platforms. It’s a completely different world from when we started.”

He also explained the economic component of the decision: “To stay in business, we need to manage costs, improve efficiency and maintain a profit. We’ve been able to invest in creative new games like Peggle and Plants vs. Zombies because we had a high profit business. That business is challenged, and if we don’t adapt, we won’t be able to invest in new IP. That sounds harsh – but if we don’t stay in business, no more plants, zombies, jewels, frogs or worms”

Vechey said that the decision was entirely his company’s, with no pressure from parent company EA. He closed the post with a glimpse at PopCap’s future: “We’re growing quickly into new areas of mobile and social, and are expanding in new markets like Japan and China. And there are many more great games to come from PopCap.”


[Editor’s note: The upcoming episode of New Game Plus mentions the announcement of Plants vs Zombies 2 but not this company restructure. This is due to filming schedules and the timing of this announcement]