Rovio, the company behind the Angry Birds game series, announced a 16 per cent reduction in its workforce as it responds to lower-than-expected growth.
Mikael Hed, Rovio’s CEO, wrote in a blog post that the company has been exploring multiple areas and building its team based on “assumptions of faster growth than have materialised”.
As a result of the disappointing growth the company will shed a maximum of 130 employees in Finland.
It will also simplify around its three key businesses with the highest growth potential, namely games, media and consumer products.
Hed said the steps needed to be taken “sooner rather than later, when we are in a good place to reignite growth” and that to succeed “we need to be the best at adapting to change”.
The company announced in September that Hed would be replaced as CEO by former Nokia executive Pekka Rantala at the beginning of 2015.
Hed has been Rovio chief for five years, during which time it saw phenomenal success with Angry Birds, which became the most-downloaded mobile game of all time.
However, The Guardian reported this week that Rovio has lost 63 million players since 2012, leaving it with around 200 million.
The company historically generated much of its game revenue from paid downloads but the industry shift to freemium games saw it invest in “the free-to-play economy” with games such as ‘Angry Birds Go!’.
In addition to games, Rovio has been following a strategy in which it has used its success with Angry Birds to build a business that includes merchandise, animation, licensing and even theme parks.
However, it appears that this approach has not been hugely successful.
The company reported a significant fall in profit for 2013 after what CFO Herkko Soininen described as a “foundation-building year” in which it invested in new business areas, such as animation and video distribution, new business models with its games; and consolidated its position in consumer products licensing.