Ex-PlayStation boss Shawn Layden joins Tencent as strategic advisor

(Image credit: Sony)

Former PlayStation boss Shawn Layden has joined Tencent Games as a strategic advisor. 

The Chinese-owned tech giant has been heavily investing in the games industry over the past few years, beginning in 2011 when it purchased a 93% stake in League of Legends developer Riot Games.

"In this new role, I hope to advise, assist, and support the team at Tencent as they deepen their activities and commitments within the industry to which I've devoted the majority of my career," Layden wrote on LinkedIn.

He added, "We are at an epoch defining moment in gaming and interactive entertainment. There are many possible roads ahead but only a few are profound, broadening, inclusive, edifying, inspiring, and/or sustainable. I am thrilled to continue this journey of discovery and thank Tencent for the opportunity."

Layden is a familiar face to PlayStation fans, having served as president and CEO of SIE America before becoming chairman of SIE Worldwide Studios in 2016 until he departed the company in 2019. He first joined Sony in 1996 as a producer on international software development and, in the following years, held numerous positions, including vice president of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe beginning in 1999 and, eight years later, president of Sony Computer Entertainment Japan.

Earlier this month, it emerged that Tencent is investing €300 million ($297m USD) in Ubisoft. It's also increasing its direct stake in the company from 4.5%, which it acquired back in 2018, to 9.99%. Tencent, along with Sony, has also recently acquired an increased share in Elden Ring and Dark Souls developer FromSoftware. Sony now owns 14.09% of the studio, while Tencent has 16.25%.

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Anne-Marie Ostler
Freelance Writer

Originally from Ireland, I moved to the UK in 2014 to pursue a Games Journalism and PR degree at Staffordshire University. Following that, I've freelanced for GamesMaster, Games TM, Official PlayStation Magazine and, more recently, Play and GamesRadar+. My love of gaming sprang from successfully defeating that first Goomba in Super Mario Bros on the NES. These days, PlayStation is my jam. When not gaming or writing, I can usually be found scouring the internet for anything Tomb Raider related to add to my out of control memorabilia collection.