EA CEO John Riccitiello Steps Down

EA CEO John Riccitiello

EA CEO John Riccitiello has announced that he is stepping down from his post. The resignation will mean that Riccitiello will no longer serve as Chief Executive Officer or as a member of the board of directors effective on March 30.

EA has certainly seen its share of problems in 2013, most notably stemming from the continuing issues surrounding SimCity.

The company has also had financial issues outside of their always online simulation. Those problems recently led to quite a few layoffs at their Montreal and Los Angeles offices.

According to the resignation letter Riccitiello wrote to the board, the company was going to come in under financial projections EA set out in January.

Riccitiello added that “EA’s shareholders and employees expect better and I am accountable for the miss.”

The EA CEO will now be Larry Probst at least in temporary role. This particular position is nothing new to Probst who has served as the president and CEO of the company before.

Probst spent more than 16 years as the CEO, from 1991-2007. He has also served as chairman of the board since 1994. In 2007 Riccitiello was named to the Chief Executive Officer position.

Riccitiello had been with the company from 1997 until 2004 when he left to help found Elevation Partners. He also served as chairman and CEO of VG Holdings.

VG Holdings was the company that helped set up and finance game studios BioWare and Pandemic. He then returned to EA when he was named the CEO in 2007.

EA would not comment beyond the published statement announcing the change in leadership and would not say how long the search for a replacement would take. The company did say that they are going to conduct a search and are looking at both internal and external candidates.

Are you surprised that the EA CEO John Riccitiello stepped down today?