Job News

Riccitiello out as Unity CEO and president

Riccitiello out as Unity CEO and president

Veteran industry executive John Riccitiello is retiring from Unity.

The company has announced that he will be stepping down as CEO and president, as well as being chair and even a member of the engine giant's board, effective immediately. James M Whitehurst is serving as interim CEO and president until a permanent replacement is found. Lead independent director of Unity's board, Roelof Botha, has been promoted to chair.

“Working with Unity under John's leadership has been one of the highlights of my career. John joined the Unity Board in 2013 and stepped in to lead the Company in 2014, at a time when we faced significant challenges,” Botha said.

“John has led Unity through incredible growth over the last nearly 10 years, helping us transition from a perpetual license to a subscription model, enabling developers to monetize, building other game services to serve our creator community, leading us through an IPO and positioning us as a pioneer in the developer community. Unity would not be where it is today without the impact of his contributions. I remain excited for the future of Unity.”

Riccitiello added: “It’s been a privilege to lead Unity for nearly a decade and serve our employees, customers, developers and partners, all of whom have been instrumental to the Company’s growth. I look forward to supporting Unity through this transition and following the Company’s future success.”

If this seems sudden, then you'd be correct. Riccitiello's swift retirement comes nine years after he joined Unity and around a month after the company announced new Runtime fees, a very aggressive and controversial monetisation tactic that the firm has in part walked back.

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.