Newell offers assurances as 25 – including Jason Holtman – leave Valve

Half-Life developer and Steam owner Valve last night laid off around 25 staff, chief amongst them being director of business development Jason Holtman.

Holtman has been at Valve since 2005 and was crucial to the company’s developer relations – clearly a job he had done well judging by the incredible, market-leading success of Steam.

Develop reports that Valve’s hardware and Android teams have been hit the hardest.

Other departures include Tom Leonard (designer), Realm Lovejoy (animator), Elan Ruskin (programmer), Bay Raitt, Keith Huggins and Marc Nagel. It was revealed yesterday that hardware engineer Jeri Ellsworth had been fired.

In an unusual move, Valve boss Gabe Newell has issued a statement on the situation, telling Engadget: "We don’t usually talk about personnel matters for a number of reasons. There seems to be an unusual amount of speculation about some recent changes here, so I thought I’d take the unusual step of addressing them.

No, we aren’t cancelling any projects. No, we aren’t changing any priorities or projects we’ve been discussing. No, this isn’t about Steam or Linux or hardware or [insert game name here]. We’re not going to discuss why anyone in particular is or isn’t working here."

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