Starbreeze Files for Reconstruction; CEO Steps Down

Starbreeze Files for Reconstruction; CEO Steps Down

Starbreeze, the Swedish video game developer and publisher behind games like Payday 2 and Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, is filing for reconstruction with the Stockholm District Court. Meanwhile, Bo Anderson is stepping down from his position as Starbreeze CEO and board member.

Underkill

In a post to their official website, Starbreeze announced that they’ve filed for reconstruction with the Stockholm District Court. Reconstruction is a similar process to the U.S.’s Chapter 11 reorganization process. It gives a company more time to find solutions to their financial issues. This will allow business (and salaries) as normal for some time. Other than Bo’s resignation, the only loss in leadership is Kristofer Arwin, another board member. According to a separate press release, Bo will be replaced with Mikael Nermark as CEO.

The company’s financial woes can be traced to the underwhelming sales of Overkill’s The Walking Dead. The four-player co-op survival game is the company’s latest big internally-developed release since 2013’s Brothers. It’s on Steam right now with a PS4 and Xbox One release slated for February 4, but Steam reviews for it are currently mixed. Starbreeze suggested the poor revenue was due to most of the sales being in regions where the game is much cheaper, such as China and Russia. News about the consequences of the game’s poor income can be traced to last week. A press release from back then spoke about the game’s weak sales and efforts to tighten the belt. Starbreeze CFO Sebastian Ahlskog said:

We have initiated a review of our costs to ensure better alignment with our revenues. We are designing a program towards that end, naturally while keeping a careful eye on revenue development. We must focus on our core business and ensure delivery of the company’s important games.

What this means for planned games like Payday 3 and System Shock 3 remain yet to be seen. Hopefully the reconstruction will allow them to right the ship before they go the way of Telltale.