Andrew Wilson named EA CEO

EA Sports veteran appointed Chief Executive Officer at Battlefield, Mass Effect publisher, replacing John Riccitiello; says he envisions EA as the "world's greatest games company;" will be paid $800,000 salary.

175 Comments

EA Sports veteran Andrew Wilson has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Electronic Arts, it was announced today. Wilson replaces John Riccitiello, who resigned in March. EA considered internal and external candidates for the role.

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Wilson most recently served at EA as executive vice president of EA Sports and Origin.

He will be paid an annual salary of $800,000 as EA's new CEO, and his target bonus percentage will be 150 percent of his salary. Wilson released a statement on his appointment, the full text of which is available below.

"Let me start by saying I am deeply honored and humbled to become EA's CEO. I have a profound respect and passion for this organization, as well as for our global community of fans, and I'm incredibly motivated to serve our people, our gamers and our shareholders at such an exciting time in our industry.

From my start at EA in Australia back in 2000, through stops in Asia, Europe and now North America, I've worked with people in this company who have consistently amazed and inspired me. It's my passion for our people and the great products we all impact that gives me such excitement for our future. I hope you all feel the same level of energy and optimism that I do as we embark on this journey together.

I envision EA as the World's Greatest Games Company. This is not about what we are aiming for or what we will become. Rather, it is about an unfaltering commitment to what we will be every day. This is an attitude that must drive our culture as one team.

I also believe EA's strategy is sound. Our focus on our talent, our brands and our platform together with our investment in next-generation consoles, mobile and PC free-to-play, as part of our ongoing transition to digital, is right. But we have plenty of work ahead to ensure our collective success.

In the short term, our mission is crystal clear: We are 100 percent focused on delivering our FY14 business plan. We have made strong progress in the first half of the fiscal year, establishing financial discipline and continuing to create a slate of fantastic games for current and next-generation consoles, mobile and PC. But now we've got to finish the job--execute in Q3 and Q4 and deliver on the promises we made to our fans and our shareholders.

Looking ahead, my focus will be on three things:

1. Continued transformation for our digital future;

2. Delivering amazing games and services across platforms; and

3. Instilling a culture of execution that will drive profitable growth.

In the days and weeks ahead, I will provide a greater level of operational detail behind the plan that will make these goals a reality. I could not be more proud to lead you as CEO of EA. Thank you in advance for your support."

EA executive chairman Larry Probst released a statement on behalf of EA's board of directors regarding Wilson's appointment to CEO. He said EA conducted a "rigorous search" for Riccitiello's successor, and mentioned "several talented executives" from inside the company and out were considered. These people were not named.

"He is a compelling and charismatic communicator who cares deeply about organizational development, teams, and the individual careers of people who work for EA," Probst said about Wilson. "Most of all, he has a powerful sense of respect for and commitment to our consumers."

In support of Wilson's transition to EA CEO, Probst will continue to serve as EA's executive chairman for an indefinite period, earning a $1.03 million salary.

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daviz88

800,000 dollars? so that means EA has money in the bank, well than when should we expect DEAD SPACE 4 lol!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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thorn3000

@daviz88 I suppose you would need way more than 800k to make DS4, 800k would be enough for a mobile companion app or something, even that probably not

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blackothh

@thorn3000 @daviz88 games cost nowhere near that kind of money to produce, most of that money goes to marketing.

Avatar image for VarietyMage
VarietyMage

First, a comment: salaries like that are why games cost $60 these days instead of $50 or less.

Now for the examination:

"Let me start by saying I am deeply honored and humbled to become EA's CEO. I have a profound respect and passion for this organization, as well as for our global community of fans, and I'm incredibly motivated to serve our people, our gamers and our shareholders at such an exciting time in our industry."

Good. Take SimCity 4 Deluxe and use it to make SimCity 5 the way it was supposed to be. Serve the gamers first, or you will lose money big time.

"From my start at EA in Australia back in 2000, through stops in Asia, Europe and now North America, I've worked with people in this company who have consistently amazed and inspired me. It's my passion for our people and the great products we all impact that gives me such excitement for our future. I hope you all feel the same level of energy and optimism that I do as we embark on this journey together."

I do not share your optimism, especially considering your all-online stance and how that has screwed up games like SimCity (probably forever). A lot of us gamers don't want to have to depend on sucky internet connections just to play our games, and you are forcing us to do so. So stop it now, if you really mean what you say. Make online OPTIONAL, not mandatory.

"I envision EA as the World's Greatest Games Company. This is not about what we are aiming for or what we will become. Rather, it is about an unfaltering commitment to what we will be every day. This is an attitude that must drive our culture as one team."

Games are great because they are fun and you can play them when you want. Great game companies make fun games you can play whenever you want, and don't force people to be dependent on laggy servers. Stop the always-online movement before it kills your company. I won't buy always-online games ever again. Diablo 3 showed me the worst of cloud-based gaming, and I will not buy a cloud game ever again. Note: I'm a huge Star Wars fan, but unless you take it offline, I will never buy or play Star Wars: The Old Republic. I don't play MMOs.

"I also believe EA's strategy is sound. Our focus on our talent, our brands and our platform together with our investment in next-generation consoles, mobile and PC free-to-play, as part of our ongoing transition to digital, is right. But we have plenty of work ahead to ensure our collective success."

Your "transition to digital" is what worries us gamers. Anything that makes us dependent on our internet connections (including disc checks, software checks, software patches / downloads, and cloud gaming), potentially ruins the game, and for those like me who have a crappy internet connection, they always ruin the game. If Minecraft can do offline after a failed check, you can too. So start doing it, and stop the cloud gaming BS.

"In the short term, our mission is crystal clear: We are 100 percent focused on delivering our FY14 business plan. We have made strong progress in the first half of the fiscal year, establishing financial discipline and continuing to create a slate of fantastic games for current and next-generation consoles, mobile and PC. But now we've got to finish the job--execute in Q3 and Q4 and deliver on the promises we made to our fans and our shareholders."

You can start by fixing the franchises you screwed up, like KOTOR (where's KOTOR 3?) and SimCity.

"Looking ahead, my focus will be on three things:

1. Continued transformation for our digital future;

2. Delivering amazing games and services across platforms; and

3. Instilling a culture of execution that will drive profitable growth."

Mark my words, if you force us to cloud gaming, your company will go bankrupt. Nobody wants to play a lag-ridden game or be unable to play because of your server failures. You need to go back to the single-player experiences that put you where you are today. I still play M.U.L.E. - I won't play SW:TOR. Figure it out.

"In the days and weeks ahead, I will provide a greater level of operational detail behind the plan that will make these goals a reality. I could not be more proud to lead you as CEO of EA. Thank you in advance for your support."

Choose your words VERY CAREFULLY. We are all listening. We remember what Blizzard's Diablo team leaders said - that they know what fun is and we don't. We are voting with our wallets. Blizzard won't get a dime from me until Diablo 4 comes out, and only if it's single-player offline. If your games aren't single-player offline, you won't get a dime from me, either. I'm tired of you telling me what fun is. Go shut down your SW:TOR servers and see how many people think that game is fun. It's time for EA to go back to basics and make fun games that don't require the internet in order to play.

Avatar image for Azghouls
Azghouls

@VarietyMage MULE is a great game. Very clever for its time.

Avatar image for VarietyMage
VarietyMage

@Azghouls @VarietyMage It's too bad it was before most kid's time. I run it through my C64 emulator, because that's the version I bought decades ago. I still maintain that M.U.L.E. could get a re-write for today's technology and make a smashing success again.

Avatar image for blackothh
blackothh

@VarietyMage Very well said! EA has been blacklisted for many years now in my wallet, and they will have to sacrifice A LOT on their end to ever get my interest again. EA rises and can fall by our collective choice alone. I would like to see them fall.

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thorn3000

@VarietyMage damn, miscalculated badly in the maths I have posted here a minute ago, you are right

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bloody-hell

@VarietyMage That pretty much sums it all up, very well done, there's nothing to add.

Avatar image for PheasantSupreme
PheasantSupreme

Guys guys guys, for 800.000$ a year and who knows how many company priviledges, wouldn't you say that EA is the greatest company too?

Avatar image for Cruisemissile
Cruisemissile

EA's new dream: Sports Sports and more Sports.

Avatar image for Primeyuri
Primeyuri

1. Continued transformation for our digital future;

2. Delivering amazing games and services across platforms; and

3. Instilling a culture of execution that will drive profitable growth.

Translation

more milking and more microtransactions.

Avatar image for demondogx
demondogx

The new face of evil

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farcorners

Blah blah blah, business plan, blah blah blah.

Avatar image for crunchb3rry
crunchb3rry

Wish I could get paid $800K a year to piss people off.

Avatar image for TrueGB
TrueGB

Meh. Puppet man. Probst is the real power.

Avatar image for Nocturnal-Gamer
Nocturnal-Gamer

He's the lone locust of the apocalypse!

Avatar image for hardeddie
hardeddie

Spoke like a true corporate arse! Casuals will fall for his nonsense, the rest wont!

Avatar image for ioshilee
ioshilee

@hardeddie EA is a casuals milking machine, so they've reached their target audience, I guess. EA don't give a shit for true gamers feelings for a long time now.

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deathstream

@ioshilee

You people who think that ANY corporation cares about its customers are really funny.

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TheGreatPhoenix

vice president of origin... is this the guy you want at the helm.... Is he the man to get reputations back up?.....

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de-astroturfer

Different face same shitty company, nothing new to see here people, move along

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crushbrain

Is he the televangelist in black or the big beefy guy?

Avatar image for GSGuy321
GSGuy321

@crushbrain televangelist

Avatar image for Rousso
Rousso

more like world greediest company

Avatar image for kutulu1
kutulu1

Bioware will never be able to make a great game again.

Avatar image for blackothh
blackothh

@kutulu1 that is one of the saddest realities of the last few years.

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DefconRave

battlefield 5 1yr dev cycle with minimal cosmetic upgrades confirmed...

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baxwam

SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS!!!!!

Avatar image for Suaron_x
Suaron_x

What is a "culture of execution?" Is that a return to Aztec times when the losers were beheaded?

Avatar image for jsmoke03
jsmoke03

shudve been myzuka

Avatar image for Suaron_x
Suaron_x

Yeah, I'm so glad we are getting more of the same.

Avatar image for deactivated-5a803cda1fb41

Soon as I saw "mobile and PC free-to-play is the thing to do" I felt sick.

Avatar image for S0loMANgrundy
S0loMANgrundy

@bernard978 hey man pvz2 was a great game.... if you like games that are inferior in every way to their predecessor and hide what should be in game behind a paywall

Avatar image for berzerk0912
berzerk0912

So, a new Satan is in charge.

Avatar image for bluefox755
bluefox755

"World's Greatest Game Company"??? Lol

Avatar image for Hurvl
Hurvl

@bluefox755 Everyone thinks or says that about their companies/products. If I made a mod and was really proud of it, I'd perhaps say it was the world's greatest mod, not taking into account that there are way better ones.

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Profilia

@bluefox755 Hey, he can dream. Just let him dream...

Moderator
Avatar image for MarcJL31
MarcJL31

Somewhere there is a sad Peter Moore.

Avatar image for blackothh
blackothh

@MarcJL31 I dont actually think hes capable of emotion

Avatar image for aci808
aci808

Sorry for this being off topic, which console version of GTA V is better?

Avatar image for Zloth2
Zloth2

Well poo, I was hoping it would be Gabe Newell.

Avatar image for GSGuy321
GSGuy321

@Zloth2 He makes 800K in a week

Avatar image for Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

@GSGuy321 @Zloth2 He makes that much a day selling TF2 hats.

Avatar image for blackothh
blackothh

@GSGuy321 @Zloth2 the difference being, Gabe is actually worth that much to gamers.

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Catz_03

Nice to see that EA hate is still strong in the comment section.

Avatar image for Whiskey3romeo
Whiskey3romeo

EA could make me CEO and I still wouldn't buy any of their crap.

Avatar image for burrito_tester
burrito_tester

As his 1st order of business, Titanfall on PS4.

Avatar image for penguino522
penguino522

Lets give him a chance lads, no need to start bashing now

Avatar image for blackothh
blackothh

@penguino522 I would prefer to start bashing now, and be proven wrong later. But You cant just make a supertanker do a 180 turn so I doubt I will have the luxury of being proven wrong.