Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) today announced that John Riccitiello will step down as Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the Board of Directors, effective March 30. The Board has appointed Larry Probst as Executive Chairman to ensure a smooth transition and to lead EA’s executive team while the Board conducts a search for a permanent CEO. The Board will consider internal and external candidates with the assistance of a leading executive search firm.
Mr. Riccitiello originally joined EA in October 1997 as President and Chief Operating Officer. He left the company in 2004 to become a founding partner and managing director of Elevation Partner. He returned to EA as CEO in April of 2007.
Mr. Probst has played a leadership role at EA since 1991. In addition to serving as Chairman of the Board since 1994, he previously served as the Company’s CEO from 1991 to 2007. As CEO, Probst successfully grew the Company’s annual revenues from $175 million to approximately $3 billion, led EA into new platforms such as mobile, online and other emerging markets and expanded its international presence to more than 75 countries.
EA expects that its revenues and earnings per share for the current quarter will be at the low end of, or slightly below previously issued guidance provided in its press release dated January 30, 2013. Actual results may be materially different and can be affected by many factors, including the levels of usage of the Company’s digital products, initial sales of new products that will be released before the end of the quarter and other factors detailed in the Company’s annual and quarterly SEC filings.