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Christian T. Peterson to Step Down as CEO of Asmodee North America

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Christian T Peterson resigns from Asmodee North America
There Will Be Games

Cristian T. Peterson has announced that he is stepping down as CEO of Asmodee North America to focus on family, health, and the pursuit of other interests.

The complete press release from Asmodee North America follows:

Roseville, MN – Long-time hobby games entrepreneur, designer, and industry veteran Christian T. Petersen told staff this week that he would be stepping down from his role as CEO of Asmodee North America at the end of 2018. Petersen, 46, founded Fantasy Flight Games (FFG) in 1995 and served as its CEO until FFG's merger with Asmodee in 2014, at which time he moved into his current role.

"After nearly twenty years with FFG and four years with Asmodee, I've seen our market go through tremendous change and amazing growth. Tabletop games have been accepted into the fabric of society and represented in pop-culture more positively than anyone could have hoped for when I joined the industry. I feel fortunate to have experienced this phenomenon first-hand, and to have been part of such an incredible journey.

"Now it's time to hand the reins to a new generation of leaders who along with the amazing staff at Asmodee North America and its studios (Catan, Days of Wonder, FFG, Heidelbär, Plaid Hat, and Z-Man) will move forward with their own unique energy and vision. I have no doubt that they'll be better, burn brighter, and achieve ever more fantastic things. I can't wait to see what they'll do, and to play what they'll make.

"The games to be released from our U.S. studios over the next 6-12 months, represent the final game products in which I have played a part. I could not have hoped for a more innovative, more commercially exciting, or more satisfying finale.

"I leave to focus on family, health, and the pursuit of other interests. My departure has been long-planned with the Asmodee Group CEO, and my friend, Stephane Carville.

"I'm proud to leave Asmodee North America in extraordinarily capable hands. I'll always be grateful to my terrific colleagues and business partners over the years, and most especially to the players. I could not have done it without you, but I'm sure you can do it without me."

During his tenure, Petersen provided vision, guidance, and creative input on hundreds of game titles, and was the lead designer on several popular games, including Twilight Imperium and A Game of Thrones: The Board Game. As a business leader, Petersen was among the first to pioneer international co-manufacturing of U.S. tabletop games, and forged successful alliances, partnerships, and licensing relationships with a wide array of persons and organizations.

As Petersen exits his role, Asmodee North America will transition into two distinct business units: Asmodee North America Publishing led by Steve Horvath, and Asmodee North America Distribution led by Andre Kieren.

There Will Be Games Christian T Peterson resigns from Asmodee North America
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Sagrilarus's Avatar
Sagrilarus replied the topic: #278820 31 Jul 2018 09:51
He's taking Netrunner with him. You heard it here first.
fightcitymayor's Avatar
fightcitymayor replied the topic: #278828 31 Jul 2018 10:57
From the reviews stretching back years that FFG in Roseville is a terrible place to work, I always presumed that sort of toxic work culture sprang forth from CP himself. I could be wrong, maybe he's a boffo guy, but I've never seen anyone in the industry go out on a limb to defend the dude.
Colorcrayons's Avatar
Colorcrayons replied the topic: #278831 31 Jul 2018 11:14

fightcitymayor wrote: I've never seen anyone in the industry go out on a limb to defend the dude.


I'll just say I have no reason to defend anything about the guy. Any further negativity I'll leave to the imagination.

On the plus side, Steve Horvath getting an even bigger role in the company will be good.

Horvath, on the other hand, is not only personable, but very proactive. That's a hill I'd die on to defend.

I take back not defending CP. He did make some good hiring choices. So there is that.
CranBerries's Avatar
CranBerries replied the topic: #278857 31 Jul 2018 18:32
Is this related to the recent purchase?
ubarose's Avatar
ubarose replied the topic: #278858 31 Jul 2018 19:14

cranberries wrote: Is this related to the recent purchase?


"the pursuit of other interests" is typically code for "leaving for a position elsewhere that pays more"
"to focus on family, health" is typically code for "was forced out."

So "to focus on family, health, and the pursuit of other interests," usually means some bullshit went down.
Sagrilarus's Avatar
Sagrilarus replied the topic: #278860 31 Jul 2018 20:13
It's gotta be hard to build something from scratch and run it for years, successfully, and then have someone else take over and tell you how to do it.
Disgustipater's Avatar
Disgustipater replied the topic: #278862 31 Jul 2018 20:29
I'm sure the boatload of money softens the blow a little bit.
Colorcrayons's Avatar
Colorcrayons replied the topic: #278866 31 Jul 2018 23:33

Disgustipater wrote: I'm sure the boatload of money softens the blow a little bit.


No kidding. He sold FFG, then turned around and reinvested his cashout back into Asmodee. I'm sure he deserves all the sympathy he can muster...
Gary Sax's Avatar
Gary Sax replied the topic: #278868 01 Aug 2018 00:26
I mean, honestly, I have a hard time seeeing CP as the bad guy here. He's the one who built the brand from nothing as an entrepreneur and he made a boatload as compensation. I just hate seeing a system that has the private equity buyers, probably leveraged to the hilt to buy the damn thing, who may or may not have any intention of doing what's good for the business from here on out.
Shellhead's Avatar
Shellhead replied the topic: #278879 01 Aug 2018 09:17
I have heard that Peterson was sometimes an unreasonably demanding boss, but I never saw it during my short time there. I was just a lowly warehouse monkey doing boardgame assembly at the time, but when he found out that I'm an accountant with a CPA license, he offered me the bookkeeper job. The money was low, so I said no and continued my job search. But I sometimes look back with regret. As Gary said, Peterson started from scratch and built this company himself, and got paid accordingly.

I grew up working for my dad's small company, and I remember all those dinners where my parents talked about the business. He did sales and installation, and my mom ran the office and did the accounting. They worked long hours and worried constantly about money. They hired and fired people, they sometimes took general contractors to court just to get paid, and our garage often served as a warehouse. By age seven, I was sometimes answering the business phone and taking messages, and at age 16 I lied about my age and joined the laborers union so I could work the union-only construction sites. Most people just don't understand the challenge of being an entrepreneur. You don't just show up for work and get paid, you invest your personal savings and take out loans and burn through cash until you hopefully start making profits. And then you need to keep going, because if you stop growing, somebody else will compete and take away some of your business. And if you are supporting a family, all the pressure is multiplied.
fightcitymayor's Avatar
fightcitymayor replied the topic: #278898 01 Aug 2018 13:28

Shellhead wrote: Most people just don't understand the challenge of being an entrepreneur.

Here's the world's smallest violin... playing just for "the entrepreneurs."

But srsly... it can be both. CP can be a successful entrepreneur, as well as an arrogant, toxic boss from which a terrible corporate culture grows.
Sevej's Avatar
Sevej replied the topic: #278953 01 Aug 2018 20:28
The end of an era. FFG is one of the major factors getting me into board game. I still remember their old charming site, with plenty of content to drool upon. Granted, the games are never as exciting as what my mind made them, but hell if they don't try to be.