Phil Spencer admits Xbox layoffs were “painful choices”

Xbox boss Phil Spencer has reached out to Xbox staff across the company, acknowledging that it’s been “a difficult week” and that while “this week’s actions were painful choices”, it “set [Xbox] up for the long-term success of our products and business”.

The email – which was shared by Kotaku – follows Microsoft’s enormous round of 10,000 layoffs that impacted several Xbox studios, including Halo studio, 343 Industries.

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“This has been a difficult week across Microsoft, and here, inside our teams. Now that many of the 1:1 and team conversations have happened, I want to take a moment to reiterate the message that you heard from your leaders,” Spencer’s email began.

“This is a challenging moment in our business, and this week’s actions were painful choices. The Gaming Leadership Team (GLT) had to make decisions that we felt set us up for the long-term success of our products and business, but the individual results of those decisions are real. I know that hurts. Thank you for supporting our colleagues as they process these changes.

“Over the coming weeks we will have many opportunities to connect and answer your questions, including the Monthly Gaming Update next week for teams who attend that meeting, and I am in close contact with teams at ZeniMax to provide support,” Spencer addes “The GLT and I are committed to being as transparent as we can. Moving forward with ambiguity is challenging, but I am confident that together, we will get through this difficult moment in time.

“Xbox has a long history of success thanks to the work you do in service of players, creators, and each other,” the message concludes. “Your work is so deeply appreciated and valued in these times of change and is integral to our business momentum. I am confident in our future and proud to be part of this team, but also conscious that this is a challenging time and I want to thank you for everything you do here.”

Microsoft previously cut “hundreds” of positions in October last year, including some team members working in the company’s Xbox division. The redundancies come ahead of Microsoft’s next financial results briefing, due on 24th January.

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