Ubisoft Paris Employees Encouraged to Strike After Worrying Statement From CEO (Update)

The strike is planned to happen later this month.


Update: According to a new report by Kotaku, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot has apologized for his previous controversial statement.

 “I heard your feedback and I’m sorry this was perceived that way,” Guillemot said. “When saying ‘the ball is in your court’ to deliver our lineup on time and at the expected level of quality, I wanted to convey the idea that more than ever I need your talent and energy to make it happen.

“This is a collective journey that starts of course with myself and with the leadership team to create the conditions for all of us to succeed together.”

As for the four demands that the strike was for, Chief People Officer Anika Grant rejected the proposal for four-day work weeks. Also, raises to match the inflation were not considered due to the company’s current financial situation.

Original article is below:

The French trade union Solidaires Informatique has recently released a statement that encourages Ubisoft Paris employees to strike after a recent announcement by the CEO that has everyone worried.

After the announcement of Ubisoft delaying Skull and Bones, and the cancellation of three unannounced games, the gaming community has been nervous about the company’s whole situation. What was more worrying was CEO Yves Guillemot’s statement that seemingly pushed the responsibility of improving the company to their employees. “The ball is in your court now,” he said.

Ubisoft Paris Encouraged to Strike

Due to these recent events, the Ubisoft Paris section of the tech-focused union Solidaires Informatique has called on the workers to stage a half-day strike this coming Friday, January 27, 2023 from 2-6 PM.

“According to Guillemot: The Ball is in our court (but the money stays in his pocket),” the post wrote.

Lies and Deceit

The post says that the CEO’s latest statement is describing a worrying future for the game company. The group quickly points out the irony of Guillemot’s line of being careful and strategic with spending and thinks it is not funny. When he talks about attrition and organizational adjustments, they think he meant more along the lines of staff reductions, discreet studio closures, salary cuts, disguised layoffs, and more.

Passing Blame

The group noted that the CEO has done this many times already in the past, shifting the blame onto the employees. He wanted them to be mobilized, “give it their all,” and be as efficient and lean as possible. What he actually meant, according to them was overtime, managerial pressure, burnout, and of the same relative terms.

Mr. Guillemot proud of his latest statement.

The union thinks Guillemot is asking a lot from his employees but without giving any compensation to them. They are quick to point out that salaries have not been increased, no implementation of the 4-day-a-week schedule, and others.

Demands for Better Employee Environment

There were four demands from the union. These were:

  • an immediate 10% increase for all salaries, regardless of annual increases, to compensate for inflation. With the hundreds of millions of euros obtained from Tencent, there is money in the coffers of the employers.
  • the improvement of working conditions, in particular the implementation of the 4-day week.
  • transparency on the evolution of the workforce, both locally and globally.
  • a strong commitment against disguised dismissals and condemnation of abusive managerial policies that push employees to resign.

In hopes of possibly getting one of these demands getting honored, Solidaires Informatique has asked the employees to stage a strike later this month.

Will the heads of Ubisoft agree to these demands? Getting all of these approved would be a welcome sight, but this is Ubisoft, and it would be highly difficult to make them possible.