Atari Europe comes out fighting

Ben Parfitt
The UK office of Atari has moved to distance itself from worrying developments in the US – and spoken of its confidence in its ‘really impressive’ line-up for 2008.

Last week, Atari’s US HQ announced that it was to completely withdraw from development – and focus solely on publishing and distribution. The division’s CEO David Pierce also decided to step down from his position.

But UK MD Jeremy Wigmore has told MCV that the European team has “good reason to be positive” about its future – and that it has achieved some ‘great performances’ in the last year.

“We can’t hide the fact that we’ve got issues, nobody’s hiding from that,” he said. “But the European team knows of some really impressive product signings and new investments that mean we have good reason to be positive about next year. It’s a recipe for success. We remain upbeat and confident.”

Wigmore added that the European workforce would not be affected by the mass restructuring that is currently blighting the US operation.

“That won’t have an influence on any office but the American one,” he commented. “If you look at the industry as a whole, everybody is evaluating their business – EA being a prime example. However what the US is doing is pretty much their concern.

“We have enjoyed some great performances in Europe and done some great numbers as well. We’ve also got a distribution network across the territory that must be the envy of other publishers.

“But that’s being overshadowed in the media by what’s happening over the Atlantic. And it’s just not a fair reflection. It feels like the press is obsessed with Jose Mourinho’s exit – when our football team is still doing the business on the pitch.”

On Tuesday, Atari posted a $7.7 million net loss for its second quarter ending September 30th, 2007 – up from a loss of $68,000 in Q2, 2006. Net revenue landed at $13.3 million, down $15.3 million compared to figures from the year before.

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Tags: atari , atari restructuring , atari europe

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