Sony has clearly built an empire in gaming. This empire was boosted thanks in part to SCEA President and CEO Jack Tretton. On Thursday, Sony and Jack Tretton parted ways. Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. announced that Jack Tretton will step down from his role as both President and CEO of SCEA. The impact will be felt March 31, 2014, as this is the set date of a mutual agreement between both Tretton and Sony. Tretton had been with the company since the beginning way back in 1995.
When it comes to marketing and announcements stemming from the PlayStation side, Tretton has been there through and through, no doubt the face of SCEA. He played a pivotal role in every launch of a PlayStation system. His last, great announcement came at E3 2013, as he stifled the crowd with the launch information of the forthcoming PlayStation 4. The PS4 is now the highest grossing, next generation console on the market to date. Per PRNewswire out of Tokyo, Tretton had this to say:
“Working at SCEA for the past 19 years has been the most rewarding experience of my career,” said Tretton. “Although I will deeply miss the talented team at SCEA and the passion demonstrated every day by our fans, I’m very excited about starting the next chapter of my career. I want to thank the employees, partners and customers for their tireless commitment to the PlayStation brand and, of course, to our fans who have pushed us to new heights of innovation and entertainment over the past two decades. I leave PlayStation in a position of considerable strength and the future will only get brighter for PlayStation Nation.”
Current Executive Vice President and COO of Sony Network Entertainment International ,Shawn Layden, will move into Tretton's voided role. Being a part of the PlayStation family for fifteen years, Layden was one of the founding members of the SNEI in 2010. Prior to that, he was the President of Sony Computer Entertainment Japan. His career with Sony also included eight years at SCE Worldwide Studios in London, where he led the direction in international software development. If anyone has the resume to fill Tretton's role with Sony, and his spot on the podium at E3, it is Layden. Layden had this to say per PRNewswire out of Tokyo:
“It’s an honor and privilege to join Sony Computer Entertainment America and be a part of the team that is leading the next generation of gaming and entertainment,” said Layden. “SCEA is committed to delivering breakthrough gaming experiences that inspire fans and exceed their wildest expectations. As PS4™ shows us every day, there has never been a better time to be part of the PlayStation community and I look forward to working with our retail, development, publishing and network partners to further demonstrate why PlayStation is the best place to play.
“I’ve worked with Jack for nearly two decades and I want to personally thank him for his leadership and the considerable contributions he’s made to the SCEA business and PlayStation brand over the years. I wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors,” said Andrew House, President and Group CEO, Sony Computer Entertainment. “I also want to welcome Shawn to the Sony Computer Entertainment America team. I have the utmost confidence in Shawn’s leadership capabilities, and his deep knowledge of the gaming industry and commitment to gamers, will help keep PlayStation at the forefront of entertainment and innovative gameplay.”
This is definitely a huge change for Sony Computer Entertainment of America. However a fictional character, SCEA's top advertising personality Kevin Butler was relieved of his marketing requirements a few years back. Now, someone arguably bigger in Jack Tretton ,as a face to the PlayStation, is leaving his position. We will see over time if Layden can live up to what Tretton established and keep the PlayStation going in the right direction.