Ins and Outs – April 2019’s industry hires roundup

Here are the highlights from the recent industry hires and moves, as published in MCV’s May issue.

Nader Alikhani

Atomhawk has appointed Nader Alikhani as its new creative development director in Vancouver. Alikhani previously worked for the likes of Kuju, WildWorks (formerly Smart Bomb Interactive) and more recently Pixel Hero Games.

Jonathan Jacques-Belletête

Former Eidos Montreal art director Jonathan Jacques-Belletête, has joined Rogue Factor, the studio behind Games Workshop adaptations such as Necromunda: Underhive Wars, as creative director. Rogue Factor is based in Montreal and was recently acquired by Bigben Interactive.

Marc Melton

Marc Melton, formerly Konami’s business director for Northern Europe and emerging markets, has joined Japanese publisher Marvelous as general manager for EMEA, Australia and New Zealand. Melton replaces outgoing general manager Harry Holmwood, who started Marvelous’ European business in 2012.

Dan Vargas and Ian Thomas

Jagex has taken on Dan Vargas as art director and Ian Thomas as technical director. Vargas has nearly 20 years of experience in the industry, including Electronic Arts and Ubisoft. Thomas has joined Jagex’s publishing platform team from Glint, bringing with him more than 16 years of software solutions and engineering experience.

CEO Phil Mansell said: “Jagex continues to attract and secure industry-respected expertise and Ian and Dan are key hires who will strengthen our creative and technical management teams. We recognise the importance of technical innovation and investing in exceptional talent, with almost 100 new hires targeted.”

Nick Marshall

Former senior marketing manager at BeefJack Nick Marshall has joined Bossa Studios as PR and communications manager. Previous experiences also include marketing services manager at Warner Bros and product manager at Curve Digital.

Harinder Sangha

Sumo Digital’s new mobile-focused Leamington Spa studio has a new operations director as Harinder Sangha has joined from Sega Hardlight, where she was operations director. She spent almost eight years total at Hardlight, having previously worked at Codemasters as operations manager. She said: “I’m thrilled to be joining Sumo and to be working with such a dynamic team. Building a new studio from the ground up is an exciting challenge.”

Chella Ramanan

POC in Play co-founder, indie developer and games journalist Chella Ramanan is Massive Entertainment’s new junior narrative designer. She will be joining her new team in Malmö, Sweden, in August.

Naoki Katashima and Arnaud Muller

Naoki Katashima has been appointed as CEO of Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe and Bandai Namco Entertainment America. Meanwhile, Arnaud Muller has become the company’s new COO for Europe.

Katashima commented: “With our commitment to developing more new titles outside of Japan, being able to bring our teams on both sides of the Atlantic closer together is another step in the right direction.”

Simon Hill

Former TV and radio presenter Simon Hill has been appointed as the new UK community manager for Koch Media and Deep Silver. He joins from Machinima where he was brand PR executive.

Jen MacLean

Amazon Game Tech has announced that industry veteran Jen MacLean has been hired as the company’s new head of worldwide business development for small and mid-size developers. She is joining Amazon from the International Game Developers Association (IGDA), where she served as executive director.

She said: “Whether developers need help building their games faster, launching and operating them more efficiently, or improving marketing and UA, I’m here to help. Amazon has an unrivaled collection of tools to help developers succeed.”

Neall Jones

Following a restructuring at Sega Hardlight, which has been “integrated into the Sega Europe pillar structure” alongside Creative Assembly, Relic Entertainment, Sports Interactive and Amplitude Studios, Neall Jones has been promoted to studio director.

The firm believes the change “will see Hardlight working very closely with Sega Europe’s executive vice president of studios, Tim Heaton, and president/COO Gary Dale, to ensure a smooth transition.” Jones previously worked for companies such as Codemasters, Eidos and Traveller’s Tales before joining Hardlight six years ago.

Got an appointment you’d like to share with us? Email Marie Dealessandri at

About Marie Dealessandri

Marie Dealessandri is MCV’s former senior staff writer. After testing the waters of the film industry in France and being a radio host and reporter in Canada, she settled for the games industry in London in 2015. She can be found (very) occasionally tweeting @mariedeal, usually on a loop about Baldur’s Gate, Hollow Knight and the Dead Cells soundtrack.

Check Also

Critical Path: July 2022 – Highlights for the month ahead!

Here are the key upcoming events and releases to mark in your calendar