A couple of weeks ago, Niero speculated on whether Nintendo's sale of some of their land in Redmond indicated that a big relocation was imminent. At the time, Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Affairs Perrin Kaplan denied that the whole company was moving, but admitted that the Sales and Marketing division was heading to San Francisco, while the company's Online department was on its way to New York.
It now appears that not only are those moves on, but that they may also bring about some very big changes to the company's corporate line-up.
Early last month, Game Informer recieved a leak detailing that the move was planned, but also stating that things had progressed to the stage of NOA giving employees a June 1st deadline to confirm whether they wished to relocate or accept a severence package from the company.
That report was followed up today with new information, which if Game Informer's source is accurate, bodes for some major changes within Nintendo's American operation. It seems that around 90% of the company's Sales and Marketing division may have opted not to move, instead taking the severence pay; and while that figure might seem dramatic in itself, some of the names reportedly within that 90% make the situation even more so.
According to Game Informer's source, Senior Director of Public Relations Beth Llewelyn; Senior Vice President, Marketing and Corporate Communications George Harrison; and Kaplan herself are all jumping ship, leaving only Tatsumi Kimishima as Chairman and CEO, and Reggie as President and COO, in terms of major NOA executives. Obviously no official statement has been released yet, and given the timing, its unlikely that any will until after E3, provided that all of this is as true as the site believes.
It has to be said though, while of this is still a rumor, it's not implausible. Game Informer's original story of the move turned out to be founded in truth, and in a more recent interview with them, Kaplan expressed definite ambivalence over whether or not she'd want to leave Redmond. If it is happening, this turn of events will be big news indeed, as the executives named have been well-known and synonymous with Nintendo for years, both within the business world and the fan community.
More details as they emerge.
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