I remember meeting Jeff Bell at E3 last year and he was a pretty easy to talk to. We had a common interest in Ohio State football and I had a nice conversation with him about all things Buckeye. Today Jeff Bell is departing Microsoft to pursue outside interests and Shane Kim will be taking over as corporate vp of Strategy and Business Development. I'm sure most people will remember Jeff's message
on Neogaf but I'll remember meeting and have a nice conversation about things other than the gaming industry.
REDMOND, Wash. — June 12, 2008 — Microsoft Corp. today announced a new leadership structure in its Interactive Entertainment Business, assembled to align with future business development opportunities.
Shane Kim will assume the role of corporate vice president of Strategy and Business Development, a newly established role in Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business. In addition, Phil Spencer, a Microsoft Game Studios veteran for six years, will assume leadership of all first-party development and publishing efforts worldwide. Both leaders will report directly to Don Mattrick, senior vice president of the Interactive Entertainment Business.
After spending four and a half years leading the transformation of Microsoft Game Studios into a world-class entertainment publisher, Kim will now explore new growth opportunities with partners across all parts of the global Interactive Entertainment Business. His focus will be on future external relationships and partnerships, as well as developing growth strategies for the entire business.
Formerly the general manager of Microsoft Game Studios Europe, Spencer will return to Redmond from the U.K.to take on his new role as general manager of the global Microsoft Game Studios business. Spencer will oversee the creation of new, unannounced franchises that aim to attract new audiences. His teams will foster some of today’s most beloved entertainment franchises, including “Halo,” “Gears of War” and “Fable,” by continuing to partner with the industry’s best developers to deliver the best games for the Windows and Xbox platforms.
“We’re strategically positioning the leadership team to drive every aspect of the Xbox business to new heights,” Mattrick said. “I firmly believe that Microsoft will lead the next great innovations in games and entertainment. Today’s organizational announcements align us to accelerate this expansive growth.”
After two years of driving a cultural change in the way Microsoft markets its entertainment brands, Jeff Bell, current corporate vice president of Global Marketing for Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business, has decided to pursue other opportunities outside Microsoft. Bell will remain at Microsoft through the summer, working with Mattrick to ensure a smooth transition of his responsibilities. In the interim while Microsoft searches for Bell’s replacement, Matt Barlow, Charlotte Stuyvenberg and Jim Merrick, all day-to-day product marketing and marketing communications leaders in the Interactive Entertainment Business, will carry forward global marketing initiatives for the business group.
“The time is right for me to pursue my life’s passion of consumer brand marketing and the creative and services that drive it.” Bell said “Coming from automotive, and now technology and entertainment, I am excited to expand to new industries and categories.”
“We thank Jeff for his achievements and contributions to Microsoft and the Xbox business. His innovative marketing programs included award-winning Xbox brand marketing campaigns, as well as world-renowned creative for ‘Gears of War’ and ‘Halo 3,’” Mattrick said. “We wish Jeff nothing but the best in his future endeavors.”