The President and Chief Operating Officer of Activision Blizzard, Daniel Alegre, has resigned from his position to start a new role in Q1 of 2023: CEO of Yuga Labs.
The pace of positive and interesting news has certainly slowed this year as the crypto winter slid deeper and deeper and catastrophic events occurred left and right. However, there are positives if you know where to look and they aren’t inconsequential either. Behind the scenes of the gaming industry (and many other industries Web3 is touching), significant moves are being made.
I have written a lot of articles in the past two years about the influx of talent into Web3, and interestingly, Daniel Alegre isn’t even the first from Activision Blizzard (although he is the most senior). In July, I interviewed the ex-Managing Director and Head of Activision Blizzard Asia Pacific, Mark Aubrey, now co-CEO of Web3 company, Catheon Gaming.
Some personal news, I have made the decision to leave my role as President and Chief Operating Officer of Activision Blizzard at the end of Q1 next year to pursue a new opportunity.
— Daniel Alegre (@dalegre) December 16, 2022
Who Is Yuga Labs?
Yuga Labs is best known for its flagship collection which is NFT royalty at this point: Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC). This 10,000-strong simian army was released on the 1st of May 2021 and it didn’t take long before they were viral and owned by A-list celebrities. With the proceeds, Yuga Labs began fleshing out their “Yugaverse” with more collections and then Otherside.
Otherside is Yuga’s gamified metaverse and one year after the BAYC launch, Otherside NFTs were an unprecedented success. In May 2022, Otherside, made up $760 million of the $850 million spent on gaming and metaverse NFTs. Then, in conjunction with the company Improbable, the game put on an event with 10,000 concurrent players and seemingly no lag or framerate drops.
So, as you can see, Yuga Labs has a success pedigree few others in the space can. There were questions, however, about whether Yuga Labs could make a good game. They were and are clearly interested in moving further than just a social metaverse space, but don’t appear to have the team with the gaming experience required to execute it, at least not in publicly listed leadership positions.
Well, that issue has been resolved rather spectacularly with this talent acquisition. Daniel Alegre has been President and COO of Activision Blizzard since April 2020 after joining from Google where he played a senior role in global expansion and strategic partnerships. He also speaks English, Spanish, French, German, and some Russian, which isn’t overly relevant, but highly impressive!
The Web3 space allows an opportunity to reinvent how we think about ownership and utility of content globally. The implications are disruptive and at the same time empowering to creators and consumers across most forms of media. Yuga Labs — home to Bored Ape Yacht Club, the Otherside metaverse, CryptoPunks, and other incredible projects — has become a creative powerhouse with ongoing ambitions to be at the forefront of such innovation. I am extremely excited to lead the team to the next phase of growth.
— Daniel Alegre via LinkedIn post
Yuga Labs may be in the rarefied atmosphere in Web3, but attracting leaders from gaming royalty outside of Web3 is no small feat. Nevertheless, they have with Daniel Alegre, as there are few posts in the games industry more coveted than President and COO of Activision Blizzard. Here’s to 2023.