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PlayStation names joint CEOs after Jim Ryan’s retirement – BBC News

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Image caption, Mr Hulst is known to gamers for his time in charge of PlayStation-owned studio Guerrilla Games, which has produced several hits

Hermen Hulst and Hideaki Nishino have been named as the joint CEOs of Sony’s gaming division PlayStation following Jim Ryan’s retirement.

In an unusual move, the role has been split into two separate top jobs, with Mr Hulst mostly overseeing software while Mr Nishino will mainly look after hardware.

The pair will start their new roles on 1 June, replacing Sony chief operating officer Hiroki Totoki, who was interim boss while the company looked for a successor.

“These two leaders will have clear responsibilities and will manage strategic direction to ensure the focus remains on deepening engagement with existing PlayStation users and expanding experiences to new audiences,” said Mr Totoki in a statement.

Mr Hulst first joined Sony in 2005 after the firm bought Horizon: Zero Dawn and Killzone developer Guerrilla Games, which he co-founded.

He went on to become head of PlayStation Studios, which oversees the development of games made by studios the company owns, such as Spider-Man and God of War.

His new role will also involve looking after how PlayStation’s games are turned into other forms of media – such as film and television shows.

“The video game industry is one of the largest entertainment industries in the world and has been built on the marriage of content and technology, and I look forward to continuing to push the boundaries of play and entertainment,” he said.

Meanwhile, Mr Nishino currently leads the team which develops the technology behind PlayStation products such as the PlayStation VR2 headset, as well as services like PlayStation Network.

His new role will oversee this, as well as relations with third-party publishers, and how its hardware is marketed.

“I am honoured to be appointed such an important role alongside Hermen,” he said.

“By working more closely together, we will be positioned to build incredible experiences for an ever-expanding audience now and in the future.”

PS5 sales

The appointments come during a turbulent time in the gaming industry, which has seen almost 20,000 jobs lost since 2023.

PlayStation was not immune to the cuts, with 8% of its employees being cut globally, amounting to approximately 900 people.

The cuts include some of the roles at Mr Hulst’s former studio Guerrilla Games.

The appointment of the new bosses marks the official end of the road for Mr Ryan, who chose to retire following five years in charge of PlayStation, which he first joined in 1994.

He said at the time he took the decision to leave over issues he had living in Europe while working in North America.

It came as some surprise when he announced the move in September 2023, after he guided the firm to some success with the PS5.

Despite having significant supply issues when it launched – which led to scalpers buying up the consoles and selling them at double the price – it has now gone on to sell 59 million units, significantly outselling rival Xbox.

Read More:PlayStation names joint CEOs after Jim Ryan’s retirement – BBC News