Today, Sony is one of the biggest names in the gaming sector and is making many professional careers as well. But at the same time, there are many people who took Sony to the level where it is today. One such person was the ex-chairman of SIE Worldwide, Shawn Layden, from 2014 to 2019.
Shawn Layden was born on 25th June 1961 and was associated with Sony for over 30 years. Layden joined Sony’s corporate communications department in 1987 in Tokyo, Japan. Starting then, he served as the Communications Assistant for Sony co-founder Akio Morita for several years. He became Vice President of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe in 1999 and was promoted to President of Sony Computer Entertainment Japan in October 2007.
In 2010, he became one of the founding members of Sony Network Entertainment International and served as its Executive Vice President and COO. Finally, in April 2014, Layden succeeded Jack Tretton as President and CEO of SIE Worldwide. Surprisingly in 2019, he stepped down and retired from the position, without revealing many details about it.
The Reason He Left
Fans and media were left to wonder why he chose to retire, as he revealed nothing at that time. He announced his retirement via Twitter, without stating any particular reason. Reports assumed that his exit was a result of an internal power struggle with SIE President Jim Ryan over the further restructuring and globalizing SIE. But now, he has finally spoken.
It seems like retirement was due to exhaustion and he wanted to end things on a high note. He stated that it was a young man’s job and that he was very content with his role so far. It’s a smart decision to go out with a bang rather than overstaying one’s welcome. As the Batman character Harvey Dent said, ‘You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become a villain.‘ Seems like Layden abides by that ideology.
“It’s a young person’s activity. I felt: This is a good time to put the pin in my legacy. That seemed like a good time to step off on top and allow another generation to take the PlayStation 5 to market. I think I took my time at the moment I saw best to take it. And I couldn’t be happier”, Layden stated to Bloomberg.
Since 1987, Layden has worked on some of the biggest projects Sony has done, making him a very valuable part of Sony’s success. During his time as the chairman of SIE Worldwide, he was responsible for the creation of two of the best games in recent times. These games i.e., God of War (2018) and Horizon Zero Dawn (2017), took SIE to new heights. So, it makes perfect sense that he chose to step down at the company’s high point.
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