Unity Layoff 3.8% Of Workforce – Weta Digital Closed

Acquired back in 2021 for an eye watering 1.6 BILLION dollars by Unity, today Weta Digital is being closed. In the face of high business costs not being offset by revenues, partially from expensive purchases like Weta, Unity proposed the Unity Run-time Fee. To say this was poorly received by developers would be the understatement of 2023.

In fact, the move ultimately resulted in a massively revised fee and the ouster of CEO John Riccitiello. He was replaced by interim CEO Jim Whitehurst, who made the following statement:

“This assessment will likely lead us to decide to discontinue certain offerings, reduce our workforce and reduce our office footprint,” said Unity. “The timing and full impact of these types of changes on our future results of operations, cash flows, or financial condition are uncertain, and for those reasons we are currently unable to reasonably quantify the potential impacts through the fourth quarter of 2023.”

This process seems to have concluded with the closure of Weta Digital, as reported by Reuters today.

Videogame software provider Unity Software (U.N) will eliminate 265 jobs or 3.8% of its global workforce and end an agreement with a digital video effects company founded by the “Lord of the Rings” director as part of a “reset,” the company said on Tuesday.

Tuesday’s announcement includes termination of the professional services piece of an agreement Unity struck with movie director Peter Jackson’s visual effects company Weta FX in 2021 after Unity purchased the technology and engineering division of Weta FX. As a result, 265 employees whose jobs are related to the agreement will be laid off, the company said.
The company has said its total workforce was around 7,000.

In addition, Unity will shut down offices in 14 locations such as Berlin and Singapore, pending employee consultation in some countries, and significantly reduce its office footprint for the remaining offices, including in San Francisco and Bellevue, Washington.

Unity will no longer mandate that employees work from offices three a days a week and will reduce “full in-office services” to three days a week in most locations, the company said.

More changes are in store to “refocus” Unity’s business, Whitehurst told Reuters. “While no additions have been finalized, it’s clear that we will reduce the number of things we are doing overall,” he said.

You can learn more about the layoffs at Unity and the closure of Weta Digital in the video below.

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