Belt tightening in Vancouver Gaming Industry

The gaming industry has proven to be pretty resilient to economic downturns, especially around this time of the year when holiday shopping kicks in and the latest game titles are stacked under the Christmas tree.

Maybe not in 2008. Vancouver’s Electronic Arts (EA) announced last week that they’re laying off 6% of their workforce (approx. 600 employees) thanks to lowered financial projections. But wait, EA claims this round of job cuts are unrelated to the economic downturn but instead were part of the company’s recent cost-cutting measures. Not sure if that makes the news better or worse.

Borrowing an analogy from the commercial real estate industry, EA is the anchor tenant of the Vancouver gaming community – if they move out, the whole mall could fail. This kind of cost-cutting and short term caution likely doesn’t bode well for EA’s future of producing brand new IP either. Let’s hope last week’s news doesn’t cause a ripple effect amongst Vancouver smaller shops.

Image credit: Frank Caron of ars technica.