Nicolo Laurent will step down as CEO of Riot Games and will be succeeded by the company’s current global president, Dylan Jadeja, according to a statement. official statement issued by Riot. Laurent is moving into an advisory role to focus more on his family after six years in the CEO role. The CEO transition is expected to be complete by the end of 2023.
Laurent has been an important part of Riot Games since the company was just a “40-person startup” in 2009, before taking over as CEO in 2017. Under his leadership, Riot Games has been accused of fostering a “culture of brothers” sexist. ”, during which Laurent was personally accused (and then clear) of sexual misconduct against his former executive assistant.
Jadeja has been with Riot Games since joining as CFO in 2011 and has held the role of global president since 2017. Laurent says it took around three years to plan who would succeed him and that, for the first time in his 17 years, year of history, Riot “searched both inside and outside the company to find the best person for this position.”
“I can imagine that this news may seem sudden, but transparently, it is a decision that has been on my mind for a while. I have been lucky to have a long and amazing journey with Riot,” Laurent wrote in an open letter. “While this chapter is coming to an end, I don’t see this as an end, I don’t plan on joining another company or starting a new one.” Laurent said that he intends to remain at Riot as an advisor “for years to come,” and that more details about the transfer process to Jadeja will be shared in the coming weeks.
“It would be disingenuous of me to suggest that I have all the answers and an action plan already defined”
“As we look towards the transition, it would be disingenuous of me to suggest that I already have all the answers and a defined plan of action,” Jadeja said in her own open letter to Riot fans. “As CEO, it’s fair to assume that I can do some things differently than those who came before me, but I want to assure you that the goal for us together will not waver. And that’s making Riot, unequivocally, the most trusted and authentic gaming company in the world… built by gamers, for gamers.”
In a 2018 investigation conducted by my city, several former Riot employees reported being sexually harassed, groomed for promotions, and receiving unsolicited genitalia photographs. One of Riot’s male senior leaders was described as regularly grabbing his genitals and farting in the faces of his employees during meetings. Laurent was not named during the my city expose.
A report published by cabling in 2021, however, he claims that Laurent protected some of the more troublesome employees who held leadership positions at the company during this time, as he noted deserted. Riot paid $100 million to settle a 2018 discrimination and harassment lawsuit brought by eight former employees of the company.