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Top-Level Microsoft Executive Quits, No Replacement to be Made Amid Xbox Exodus

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Summary: Microsoft's Xbox team keeps going under water

A few weeks ago, Satchell quit the Xbox team, following the footsteps of a director in the same team which has been collapsing for years. This overly-hyped part of Microsoft has raked in billions in losses. Now comes another major departure. It is top executive John Schappert, the chief technical officer.



Joe has some details that serve as informative background:

Schappert is the second top Microsoft executive to leave the company’s interactive entertainment group in recent weeks. CTO Chris Satchell departed for gaming manufacturer International Game Technology two weeks ago. Microsoft is not replacing Schappert’s position. Instead, Marc Whitten will continue to head Xbox Live, while Phil Spencer will lead Microsoft Game Studios. Both report to Don Mattrick, the senior vice president in charge of the interactive entertainment business. “Microsoft has complete confidence in the leadership of Marc and Phil and that their teams will remain focused and on track as we ramp up for this holiday,” a spokeswoman said.


This is not the first such departure and Microsoft has no replacement planned for Schappert. He will move over to EA, so this is no case of early retirement, either. Apparently, Microsoft just is not the place for him to be, so he will fill a gap in Electronic Arts where he becomes COO. Schappert actually came from there to Microsoft, but he probably did not like what he found, which is revealing. There is an enormous amount of coverage because it shows that despite coming changes (e.g. Natal), XBox seniors are giving up and find better prospects elsewhere.

“It will be worth keeping an eye on what EA does next (maybe an acquisition).”So what will happen to Microsoft's Game Studios? Surely, the relationship to EA may gradually tighten due to interpersonal factors, but nonetheless, it is more damaging and disruptive to Microsoft than it is beneficial. It will be worth keeping an eye on what EA does next (maybe an acquisition). This is not the first Microsoft intrusion and not the first time, either. It's a case of rehiring.

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