Yuga Labs, the company behind the popular NFT-based game, Axie Infinity, has announced that Daniel Alegre is now taking over as its CEO. Alegre is a well-known veteran in the gaming industry, having worked at Google for 16 years and most recently as COO at Blizzard.
Alegre’s arrival at Yuga Labs is perfectly timed, with the company’s gaming ecosystem about to go into hyperdrive. The Otherside’s 2nd Trip just concluded, while the HV-MTL Evo process and the Legends of the Mara experience are looming on the horizon.
Alegre was hired as Yuga Labs’ next CEO back on December 19, 2022, and was due to take the reins “in the first half of 2023.” He will succeed Nicole Muniz, who will remain as both a partner and strategic advisor. Alegre’s impressive track record in the gaming industry, particularly with overseeing the international delivery of major franchises like Call of Duty, Candy Crush, Diablo, Overwatch, and World of Warcraft, makes him a valuable addition to the Yuga Labs team.
Alegre’s experience in building out a global approach to retail across Google’s product areas and driving global partnerships across all functional areas also makes him well-suited to lead Yuga Labs as it continues to expand its presence in the NFT gaming space.
Yuga Labs co-founder Gordon Goner recently took a leave of absence for health reasons, making Alegre’s arrival even more timely. Having a true gaming industry veteran like Alegre at the helm of Yuga Labs will undoubtedly be incredibly beneficial to the company’s growth and continued success.
Alegre has already made his mark at Yuga Labs, purchasing an M1 Robot with a Cowboy Hat for 16 ETH on December 15, 2022. With Alegre now at the helm, Axie Infinity fans and the wider NFT gaming community will be eagerly anticipating what Yuga Labs has in store for the future.
Today is my last day as President and COO of Activision Blizzard. Thank you to the incredible teams who create truly epic games. Tomorrow I officially start at CEO of Yuga Labs. Couldn't be more excited for this next chapter. pic.twitter.com/eo3RfIyz0q
— Daniel Alegre (@dalegre) March 31, 2023
Activision has had some issues in the past
Over the last half-decade, Activision has been dealing with a number of controversies, including allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination against female employees. These allegations led to a lawsuit being filed by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing against Activision Blizzard in July 2021. The company has also faced criticism for its handling of the situation and the toxic work environment that allegedly exists within the company. This has resulted in significant public backlash, with some fans and employees calling for boycotts and protests. Alegre’s departure from Activision to Yuga Labs may be seen as a positive move for those who are critical of Activision’s leadership and culture.
It’s worth noting that the gaming industry and the NFT space have both been the subject of intense scrutiny and controversy in recent years. The allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination at Activision Blizzard have been a particularly significant source of controversy in the gaming industry. Meanwhile, the NFT space has faced criticism for its environmental impact and the high levels of speculation and price volatility surrounding some NFTs. Furthermore, the recent fake news surrounding Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) highlights the need for responsible and informed reporting in the NFT space.
Given these issues, the appointment of Alegre as Yuga Labs’ CEO marks an interesting new phase for the company. As Yuga Labs continues to expand its presence in the NFT gaming space, it will be important for the company to navigate these complex issues with transparency and responsibility. Nevertheless, we are rooting for both Alegre and the broader Yuga community as they continue to innovate and push the boundaries of what’s possible in the NFT space.
The Future of Yuga Labs is still bright
Alegre’s expertise in overseeing the international delivery of major franchises such as Call of Duty, Candy Crush, Diablo, Overwatch, and World of Warcraft will undoubtedly prove invaluable as Yuga Labs continues to develop and expand its own gaming ecosystem. Additionally, Alegre’s experience in driving global partnerships across all functional areas will likely be beneficial as Yuga Labs looks to integrate with other Web3 projects and the metaverse. These factors set Yuga Labs apart from other NFT gaming companies and provide a clear direction for the company’s continued growth and success.
As a disclosure, it’s worth mentioning that two NFTCulture founders own Yuga-related NFTs.