GTA VI Publisher Cancels $140 Million In New Projects And Lays Off Hundreds


A man makes off in a boat full of money.

Image: Rockstar Games

Grand Theft Auto VI publisher Take-Two Interactive announced massive cuts in an SEC filing at the end of business today. The company revealed it will lay off 5 percent of its roughly 11,000-strong workforce and has cancelled several in-development projects valued at $140 million in an effort at “rationalizing its pipeline.”

“The Company estimates that it will incur approximately $160 million to $200 million in total charges in connection with the Plan,” Take-Two wrote in its filing. “The Company expects $40 million to $60 million of the total charges to result in future cash expenditures. The total charge consists of approximately $120 million to $140 million related to title cancellations, approximately $25 million to $35 million associated with employee severance and employee-related costs, and approximately $15 million to $25 million related to office space reductions.”

These surprise cuts comes less than a month after Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick told IGN the company had “no current plans” to lay off any more employees following a “cost-reduction” program teased in a March investor call. The company is expecting a massive boost to sales when GTA VI launches. It’s currently slated to arrive in 2025.

Take-Two recently announced a plan to acquire Gearbox Entertainment, maker of the loot shooter series Borderlands which is published by its 2K label, for $460 million by the end of June. The deal would be financed by a sale of new Take-Two stock. In addition to GTA VI, Take-Two and its subsidiaries also have new BioShock and Mafia games in development, while Ken Levine’s Ghost Story Games works on Judas, which looks like BioShock in space.

Take-Two reported net bookings of $1.2 billion last quarter, up 20 percent from a year ago. Zelnick raked in over $40 million in total compensation as head of the company last year, thanks in part to bonuses pegged to getting players to spend more money on microtransactions.



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