Ubisoft Paris Calls For Strikes Over Low Pay, "Exhausting" Development Cycles

Ubisoft Paris workers could be heading for strike action following remarks made by company CEO Yves Guillemot that seemed to put the pressure on staff, with workers describing it as "catastrophic communication".

As reported by Game Developer, the Ubisoft Paris section of workers union Solidaires Informatique claim Guillemot is shifting the blame for the company's recent financial challenges, which have led to the cancellation of three unannounced projects, onto employees. Following the announcement that Ubisoft was facing "major challenges" the CEO called for employees' "full energy and commitment to ensure we get back on the path to success" and to be "as efficient and lean as possible". These remarks have not gone down well.

The Solidaires Informatique branch of Ubisoft Paris claims that with these words Guillemot is adding pressure, shifting blame, and inviting overtime and extra work loads that could lead to burnout. Ubisoft workers were told the "ball is in your court" to deliver projects on time and on budget in an internal email delivered earlier this month.

"Mr. Guillemot asks a lot from his employees, but without any compensation. Have salaries kept up with the high inflation of recent years? What about the implementation of the four-day week? What has been put in place for the teams that come out of the productions exhausted (like those of Just Dance or Mario [+ Rabbids]?" wrote Solidaires Informatique.

Responding to Guillemot's comments, the union has made calls for an immediate 10 percent salary increase for all workers for inflation, improved working conditions especially in implementing a four-day work week, for transparency over Ubisoft's plans for what it will do over local and global staff, and to condemn abusive managerial policies that it says "push employees to resign".

Tencent's recent investments into the company were also mentioned by the union branch. "With the hundreds of millions of euros obtained from Tencent, there is money in the coffers of the employers," they wrote.

The workers union called on Ubisoft Paris employees to strike on January 27 from 2 to 6pm. Ubisoft is yet to respond to Solidaires Informatique's demands, but we'll update when it does.

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