What you need to know
- Ubisoft held its Q1 earnings call today.
- During the call, CFO Frédérick Duguet pointed to several characters in Ubisoft games as examples of diversity.
- CEO Yves Guillemot stated that most staff and teams behave respectfully.
Ubisoft discussed its Q1 earnings today, detailing net bookings and announcing that the next Ubisoft Forward presentation would be held in September. At the start of the accompanying earnings call, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot addressed the ongoing allegations of harassment within the company, stating that the "vast majority" of staff and teams behave in a respectful manner.
"While Ubisoft's current performance and business prospects are stronger than ever, we nonetheless face a very serious challenge following the recent allegations and accusations of misconduct and inappropriate behavior within our Group," Guillemot said.
Ubisoft CFO Frédérick Duguet also rattled off a list of different characters in Ubisoft games as positive elements of diversity. Some of the examples cited include Jade from Beyond Good & Evil, Altair and Bayek from the Assassin's Creed franchise and Ash, an Operator in Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege.
When one caller specifically asked Guillemot if he knew about the system workplace harassment that had been taking place, Guillemot said that "It has now become clear that certain individuals betrayed the trust I placed in them."
Ubisoft recently announced the departure of its Chief Creative Officer Serge Hascoët and other executives. The company also outlined a plan to provide better feedback and be more in tune with employee complaints. This came after a massive wave of allegations of harassment and sexual impropriety went through the gaming industry, with several Ubisoft employees named.
Other moves made by the company include investigations by third-party consultants into the allegations, a new Head of Workplace Culture, and a "transformation of its HR processes," according to a statement.
"Our overriding aim is ensuring that all Ubisoft employees have a safe and inclusive workplace environment," Guillemot said.
In other words, the words Ubisoft displays at the beginning of every one of their games is as empty and meaningless as they seem. Just window dressing to keep with their social justice credentials without enacting any real change.
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