Video game giant Ubisoft shakes up executive ranks as it deals with harassment claims

A Paris-based game software developer with offices in several Canadian cities is making changes in response to complaints against several executives, including a vice-president based in Toronto.

Ubisoft says Maxime Beland, its Toronto-based vice-president of editorial, has resigned and another unidentified employee in Toronto has been fired.

Tommy Francois, a Paris-based vice-president of editorial and creative services, has been placed on disciplinary leave.

The two vice-presidents were part of a creative team that set the tone and direction of Ubisoft’s various games, which include the Assassin’s Creed franchise.

Ubisoft chief executive Yves Guillemot said in a public letter posted online that he has decided to “revise the composition” of its editorial department and transform its human resource processes.

‘Inappropriate behaviour’

In addition, Ubisoft has set up a confidential reporting platform online, “enabling employees as well as external individuals to report harassment, discrimination and other inappropriate behaviours,” says the letter addressed to the company’s employees.

“The situations that some of you have experienced or witnessed are absolutely not acceptable,” Guillemot said in the letter.

“No one should ever feel harassed or disrespected at work, and the types of inappropriate behaviour we have recently learned about cannot and will not be tolerated.”

Guillemot said Ubisoft was to begin holding online sessions on Monday, moderated by external facilitators, in order to collect suggestions for improvement.

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