Aristocrat has suspended Russian operations and helped around two-thirds of their Pixel United organization in Ukraine to voluntarily relocate either internationally or to safer locations within the country. The business has also suspended its mobile gaming business in Russia.
Pixel United, which rebranded from Aristocrat Digital in November 2021, usually employs approximately 1,000 people across its business units.
However, operations have been disrupted by the invasion, with the majority of staff having elected to voluntarily relocate, either internationally or to safer locations within the country with the support of Aristocrat.
To support this process, Aristocrat has set up a special task force in Poland to assist staff and families on the ground, while the business is also providing transport, visas and legal help, housing and settling-in assistance for relocated staff.
For employees and their families that have chosen to remain in Ukraine, Aristocrat has been providing funds, shelter, emergency supplies and other direct aid.
“The thoughts of all Aristocrat people are with our Ukraine colleagues and the team members who are supporting them at this difficult time,” Aristocrat said.
“The wellbeing and safety of our people remain our highest priority and Aristocrat’s Pixel United team continues to lead a comprehensive response.”
Aristocrat said Pixel United is continuing to actively manage and prioritise game content releases, adding that it does not anticipate a material impact on earnings as a result of the crisis.
Relocated staff are working remotely, supported by existing Pixel United studios across Europe, while Aristocrat will open a new office in Wroclaw, Poland, shortly.
“The business is leveraging its broad network of studios and operations across Europe, US and Israel, and its combined global capabilities, to put in place effective mitigations and uphold business continuity,” Aristocrat said.
Aristocrat added that it has suspended operating its mobile games in Russia, saying offering games in the country is “currently not viable”. Aristocrat said that Russia made up 3% of Pixel United bookings before the suspension.
“In respect of our Russia-based employees, we are exploring our strategic options and we will continue to do what we can to support our Russia based employees,” Aristocrat said.
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