May 27, 2021 - Technology

Ubisoft CEO's son resigns from studio post

A photo of two men with their arms folded
Rémi Pellerin and Charles Guillemot (Image: Ubisoft)

Charlie Guillemot is stepping down as co-head of Ubisoft mobile studio Owlient, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Guillemot is the son of Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot, whose company has been embroiled in a series of workplace and content controversies over the past year.

Charlie Guillemot's departure was announced internally to Ubisoft employees last week. He is leaving along side studio co-lead Rémi Pellerin to pursue new opportunities, according to the message.

  • "We wish them all the best for their future endeavors," a Ubisoft rep told Axios Thursday.
  • Pellerin and Charlie Guillemot did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
  • Both men managed the studio since 2014.

Between the lines: Owlient is one of the lower-profile of Ubisoft's over two dozen studios and is not as well known as those that make "Assassin's Creed" and "Far Cry" games.

  • Founded independently in 2006, the studio initially focused on producing games about horses, including a horse-breeding game called "Howrse." Ubisoft bought the studio in 2011.
  • Last August, Owlient was slammed for a new Tom Clancy-branded game called "Elite Squad" that used Black Lives Matter imagery in association with an in-game terrorist organization.
  • Ubisoft apologized, removed the imagery and, in September, Yves Guillemot called it "an oversight" in a video acknowledging myriad issues at the company, including widespread accounts of sexual misconduct at studios other than Owlient.

Ubisoft is a massive multinational company, but it is partially run as a family business.

  • Last fall, some Ubisoft workers expressed frustration on internal message boards over a Guillemot family member having had a chance to run a studio just out of grad school, an opportunity afforded to few in the industry.

What's next: A Ubisoft source told Axios they believe the departing Owlient managers will be starting a new studio outside of Ubisoft, but it is unclear if that definitely is the plan.

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