Gameloft shuts down Hyderabad studio; around 200 left jobless

In a surprise move, Gameloft has shut down its Hyderabad studio, resulting in a loss of around 200 jobs.

An inside source has told MCV that employees were informed of the closure on Tuesday. They were then asked to pack up and vacate the office and not report to work the next day.

Another affected source told us that an email sent out to all employees by human resources stated that the closure was a strategic decision” taken by Gameloft headquarters and was forced by unavoidable circumstances”.

All employees were made to sign two documents – one stating that they were resigning of their own accord, and another agreeing that Gameloft would carry out all financial settlements by February.

The Hyderabad studio was mostly involved in porting and game testing, and the move is seen as a cost-cutting measure from Gameloft, which co-incidentally announced a 27% revenue growth in 2012 the very same day.

Unconfirmed reports suggest that some of the Hyderabad studio’s projects will be moved to Gameloft’s studio in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

While all employees have been laid off, HR and a few administration personnel at Hyderabad will remain employed till mid-February as the company ties up loose ends.

None of the employees will receive severance pay from Gameloft, although some will receive a month’s salary as per their employment contracts, our source has confirmed. The company has also promised to assist laid-off employees in finding employment elsewhere.

It’s worth noting that aside from the studio in Hyderabad, Gameloft also has a small business office in Delhi, which is still operational. Gameloft’s Pune studio was taken over by Ubisoft in 2008. Ubisoft Pune has incidentally announced several job openings in an effort to assist those laid off by Gameloft, as have several other studios across India.

MCV contacted Gameloft Hydarabad studio manager Sarang Nafdey, who made the announcement of the studio’s closure to employees, but he declined to comment on the matter.

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