After a month or so of speculation, Microsoft has confirmed today that Xbox One executive Phil Harrison has decided to leave the company in pursuit of other business ventures.
After Games Industry International broke the story about a month ago, they confirmed the news earlier today. Phil Spencer, the current head of Microsoft’s Xbox Division and Microsoft Studios, released a statement thanking Harrison for his time at the company and clarifying some of the rumors:
“Following a successful tenure as Corporate Vice President in Xbox in Europe, Phil Harrison has chosen to pursue business interests outside of Microsoft,”
“Phil has been a distinguished leader for our European Xbox team – overseeing production at our award-winning European studios and making a substantial contribution to the Xbox business globally. I want to thank Phil for his creativity and leadership over the past three years. Phil is a great friend of mine and I wish him the very best with his future endeavours.”
Harrison joined Microsoft in 2012 to become its corporate Vice President. He took over the European division of Microsoft Studios and oversaw many of the UK’s development studios, including Lionhead Studios and Rare Ltd. In a statement issued to Games Industry by Harrison himself, he wished Microsoft well in its future endeavors,
“I have enjoyed the last three years at Microsoft enormously and it has been a privilege to lead and work along side the incredible talent within Microsoft Studios in Europe, including Rare, Lionhead, Lift, Soho and Press Play. I wish them and my many friends throughout the Xbox world every continued success and know that games will continue to prosper across Microsoft under Phil Spencer’s leadership,”
According to the original report, Harrison grew frustrated after Don Mattrick left Microsoft to join Zynga in 2013. He was also reportedly unhappy when the promotion of Phil Spencer to the Head of Xbox did not lead to a promotion for him.
Source: Games Industry International