Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson refused his cash bonuses for the latest financial year which ended March 31, along with a number of other executives at the publisher. This is according to a Securities & Exchange Commission filing from June 21.
GameDaily reports that Wilson and his staff “requested that they receive no performance cash bonus award for fiscal 2019”, as per a line from the official filing. The filing goes on to note that this decision was made due to EA’s less than stellar financial results for Fiscal Year 2019, and “in order to maintain alignment with our pay-for-performance executive compensation philosophy.”
A statement from EA explained:
While we are disappointed with our fiscal 2019 results, we understand the challenges we face, and we will continue to focus on how we can apply the strengths of our Company to capitalize on our opportunities.
EA’s 2019 results represent a downturn after a a strong run between 2014 and 2018. The company reported $5.15 billion during the previous fiscal year, while this year’s results are down to $4.95 billion. This downturn in revenue is likely due to Battlefield V and Anthem not performing as expected.
While Apex Legends has proved to be a massive hit for EA, it’s worth noting that the game only released in February 2019, just one month before the fiscal year ended in March. FIFA 19 also, predictably, was a solid performer for the company.
Besides Wilson, the other EA executives who gave up their bonuses include CFO Blake Jorgensen, CTO Kenneth Moss, chief marketing officer Chris Bruzzo, and chief studios officer Laura Miele. Patrick Soderlund, who left the company in August last year, also reportedly refused his bonus.
GameDaily reports that the money that would have gone to the executives will instead be placed into a bonus pool of around $4.8 million, which will be paid to employees. Meanwhile, the $20 million in equity bonuses that was offered to Soderlund to try and get him to stay has gone into a pool dedicated to securing new hires.
Between Apex Legends gearing up for Season 2 (which dragons, no less), the Fall release of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, and a new Dragon Age game somewhere on the horizon (maybe, probably), I imagine EA is quietly optimistic that the next fiscal year will be a brighter one.
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Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.