It’s a fairly quiet week for personnel moves in the esports/gaming industry, but not so much for earth moving stories, like all the teams that didn’t get partnered for Riot’s VCT, Twitch banning the play on-stream of gambling companies that don’t have a license in the U.S., and G2 Esports’ CEO getting sanctioned for partying with notorious YouTuber Andrew Tate. We’re not covering any of that here—there are plenty of places already talking about those things—but we do want to highlight just how bad things were at Australian esports organization ORDER before it went into bankruptcy. On to this week’s newsletter! – James Fudge.
Report: ORDER was Burning Through $300K a Month Prior to Bankruptcy
According to a report in The Australian from David Swan, Australian esports organization ORDER was not generating any significant profits and was spending hundreds of thousands of dollars a month prior to going into voluntary insolvency earlier this year.
On Sept. 16, ORDER insolvency administrator Shane Cremin of Rogers Reidy and creditors met and voted to dissolve the company after concluding that it was posting an average loss of $300K AUD a month, realized a net loss $3.7M AUD for financial year 2022, and owed creditors nearly $62K AUD.
Cremin also indicated that a preliminary investigation by his firm had found that ORDER Director Gerard Murphy may have been in breach of his duties: “Whilst I am yet to fully complete my investigations into the company’s access to external funding given the time constraints under the voluntary administration appointment, I consider that the director may have breached his duty under Section 180 of the Act,” Cremin told The Australian.
“The company’s expenditure appears to have been well outside of its means, with significant losses being suffered since its inception. In particular, the company was making losses of an average $300,000 per month in the 2022 financial year with minimal revenue; and the company’s activities are intertwined with other group companies where there is little or no benefit to the company.”
People on the Move
Here is this week’s list of promotions, hires, and departures in the gaming/esports industry:
- Saad Sarwar is the latest to leave Galaxy Racer; she announced her exit from the role of senior vice president of the MENA region, pending a hand-over to whomever will take on the role at the end of this month.
- Stephen Stagliano has been promoted to the role of manager of commercial partnerships at Riot Games.
- Maximilian Wischow has been promoted to product lead organized play (Teamfight Tactics, Project L, Wild Rift) – EMEA esports at Riot.
- Former Repeat.gg Global Marketing Director Scott Bednarski joins Sony Interactive Entertainment as its new marketing program manager in charge of esports and competitive gaming.
- Team Inferno Founder Jasmine Randolph has taken on an additional role at Skillshot Media as video editor for the HBCU Esports League by Cxmmunity.
- Riley Long will leave his role as head esports coach at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan at the end of September.
- Rainbow Six Siege maker Red Storm Entertainment (an Ubisoft-owned studio) has appointed Elizabeth Loverso as its new managing director, replacing co-founder and now former managing director Steve Reid, who will finally retire at the end of 2022.
- Shapath Shah formally announced that he has been promoted to the role of project manager at India-based esports organization The Esports Club. Shah took on the role in August.
- Zainab Lakdawala has also formally announced a promotion to the role of project manager at India-based esports organization The Esports Club, a role she began in August as well…
- Jessica Kraneis has taken on a part-time role as project specialist employer branding at Bayes Esports.
- Jay Hairston joins XP League as its new director of special programs.
- Marcus Graham leaves Twitch after nearly 11 years at the company to join Fortis Games as its new VP of community development.
- Former chairman of Worldwide Studios and CEO of PlayStation US Shawn Layden has joined Tencent Games as strategic advisor.
- August Dean Ayala leaves his role as game director at Blizzard Entertainment after more than 11 years at the world of Warcraft and Overwatch maker.
- CeeCee Smith has been promoted to associate director of live operations at Ubisoft.
- Cat Jones joins EA’s Codemasters division in Southam, England, as its new people practices lead.
- Geoff Goodman, the lead hero designer of the Overwatch series, has left Blizzard.
- Malinda Dietrich goes from intern to the role of technical writer at Epic Games.
- Jerrika Romero is promoted to the role of associate creator relations manager at Epic Games.
- Jay Acevedo is promoted to the role of strategic operations director at Brass Lion Entertainment.
- Former Game Informer Editor-in-Chief Andrew Reiner joins Borderlands maker Gearbox Software as its new global creative executive officer.
- Alex Barnett has been promoted to the role of associate project manager at Insomniac Games.
- Raymond Bartos joins Blizzard as its new senior game producer II working on World of Warcraft.
- Kathryn Marshburn leaves Spotify to join Warner Music Group as its new release content manager
- Disney-owned sports network ESPN has hired Susie Piotrkowski as vice president of espnW.
- Kristin Tormey has been promoted to the role of director of social media & digital engagement at The Wendy’s Company.
- Former G2 Esports social media specialist Selene Mauretto has joined Virtex as its new Communications manager.
- Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution has named April Carretta as its new head of communications for direct to consumer.
- Christopher Walker has been promoted to head of technology (gaming) at betting company Sky Betting & Gaming.