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Amazon's Next CEO, Jassy, Committed to Making Videogames

Amazon's incoming chief executive expresses support for the head of its game studios.

Andy Jassy, Amazon's  (AMZN)  next chief executive, reportedly affirmed his commitment to making videogames, while acknowledging the difficulties his team has encountered.

Jassy, who in the third quarter is set to succeed Jeff Bezos at the helm of the Seattle tech and online-retail giant, expressed support for Mike Frazzini, the head of Amazon Game Studios, Bloomberg reported, citing a staff email.

“Some businesses take off in the first year, and others take many years,” wrote Jassy, who currently heads Amazon’s cloud computing division and is Frazzini’s boss. “Though we haven’t consistently succeeded yet in AGS, I believe we will if we hang in there.”

Frazzini last week was the subject of a Bloomberg profile examining the troubles the company has faced in gaming. 

Both executives sent emails to their staff this week referencing the article, Bloomberg said, saying the accounts were exaggerated but recognizing that they had made mistakes.

“Being successful right away is obviously less stressful, but when it takes longer, it’s often sweeter,” Jassy wrote. “I believe this team will get there if we stay focused on what matters most.” 

Frazzini addressed allegations that the studios had cultivated a “bro culture,” alienated many women and drove them out of the company. 

The company has "zero tolerance for this type of behavior," Frazzini wrote.

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Frazzini had never made a videogame before he was appointed head of Amazon’s studios. That lack of experience was a frequent complaint from current and former employees who spoke to Bloomberg.

 “We’ve learned and improved a lot along the way, myself included, and we will continue to do so,” Frazzini wrote to his team. “Making great games is hard, and we’re not going to get everything right.”

The company’s entry into videogame creation in 2012 was originally ordered by Bezos, Bloomberg reported.

Since then, Amazon has spent billions of dollars, released two big-budget games —both of which flopped — and canceled many projects.

Big tech companies have face challenges when they've tried to break into gaming. On Monday, Google said it was shutting down its game-development studios.

On Tuesday, Amazon said Bezos would step down from his role as CEO of the company in the third quarter and take the post of executive chairman. 

The move came as Amazon handily beat analyst earnings and sales estimates for the fourth quarter.

Shares of Amazon at last check were down 1.5% at $3,328.