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Eidos parent SCi axing 14 projects - Pivotal too?

In an alarming move by Eidos parent comapny SCi, 14 projects are to be axed to balance against the £81.4 million ($162 million)loss the company has accrued. This may or may not spell doom for other SCi-owned developers; Eidos has declined to comment on rumors that Conflict: Denied Ops dev Pivotal Games will be sold off or closed down asa result of SCi's decision.

Here's the original story on the SCi move from our pals atNext Generation:

Eidos parent company SCi has announced it is to cut a quarter of its workforce and cancel 14 projects as part of radical restructuring plans.

The company says it plans to operate with a maximum of 800 staff, a reduction of 25 percent, while the board has decided to cancel 14 projects which it considers unlikely to generate an acceptable return on investment or are lacking in quality.

"SCi is in need of immediate change," said SCi CEO Phil Rogers. "Following our business review over the last six weeks, we are initiating a clear action plan based on three fundamental strands of activity: a radical change in our structure to a studio-led business, a top to bottom program of product improvement and efficiency and a considerable cost reduction plan."

"To get SCi on track we have to act rapidly and effect change quickly. We must allow the world-class people that we have within the Group to focus on strong, profitable titles which will create the value our shareholders deserve."

The company plans to change from a centrally controlled development and publishing model to a studio-led business focusing on cornerstone products such as Tomb Raider, Hitman, Championship Manager and Deus Ex.

Casual and mobile gaming will come together under a new Eidos Play brand, while production services, which include localisation and QA, will be relocated from London to Montreal in order to bring staff closer to games while benefiting from Montreal's lower cost operating environment.

The company also says it will cut its annual operating costs by £14 million by the end of June 2008 at a one-off cost of £7 million.

"I am confident our staff share this vision and excitement for the future, and determination to build a working environment where our innovation and creativity can be commercially realized," added Rogers.

And here's the scoop on the fate of Pivotal Games,courtesy of our buddies at CVG(as written by Chris Hicks):

Eidos has declined to comment on rumour that Conflict: Denied Ops developer Pivotal games is being closed - or sold - in the wake of SCi's shake-up.

According toDevelop, unconfirmed reports are suggesting SCi is looking to sell off or close 'non-core' studios as part of CEO Phil Rogers' restructuring of the company.

SCi's studio portfolio includes its Eidos publishing label and games studios Crystal Dynamics, Io Interactive, Beautiful Game Studios, Eidos Studios Hungary, Eidos Studios Sweden, Pivotal Games and Eidos Montreal.

Conflict: Denied Ops, the latest game by Pivotal, earned disappointing ratings. PSM3 three gave it 5/10, labelling it "a disastrous entry for a previously well-regarded franchise."

Feb 29, 2008