This Is Why Midway's CEO Is No Longer Midway's CEO

Going off naught but anecdotal evidence, it's easy to see why Midway CEO David Zucker was binned (as if he actually "resigned") earlier this week. Guy didn't do a very good job, and leaves Midway in worse shape than when he came in. But that's just a general assumption: it's a lot more fun to look at some numbers showing just how shitty the company have become since 2004, when Sumner Redstone bought a majority stake in the company (which ties in nicely with Zucker's tenure, which began in 2003):

- Midway have lost around $300 million dollars since 2004
- Their revenue growth from 2004 through to 2007 was -3%
- The increase in net losses from 2004 through to 2007 was at least 399%
- Midway's stock value has dropped by 79% since 2004
- Sumner Redstone have lost over $500 million in equity since taking over Midway

All paint a bleak picture, but me, I think Zucker's fate was sealed the day somebody at Midway saw Cruis'n on the Wii and said "yes, brilliant, let's release this".
Midway CEO David Zucker canned after Sumner Redstone stacks up huge losses [Variety]


    I don't really know how to respond to this without screaming YAAHOO and HA HA HA among the other unprintable euphemisms in my mind, however the reality of this situation is the only people hurt are the little guys. I was one of many who loved Ratbag and their contributions to the gaming world. I looked at the buyout with dubious suspicion. Too often in this day and age companies buy out others for something small they need and dump the company after a few months. This is corporate reality. Why pay tens of millions to develop something when you can buy it up in a few days. Who cares about the rest of the useless junk? People’s lives become something unwanted, unneeded and in the way.

    Unfortunately these people are the ones who do most all of the work, devote their lives to something they believe in and are the ones who suffer the most financially and psychologically when something goes amiss. This guy traded people lives without any concern for the outcome. Companies as large as Midway could have closed the studio with dignity, but they chose to throw away the lives of these people as if they were nothing but garbage. This is exactly the way Midway looks at everything they do. If they can treat people that work for them and devote their lives to making this company money you cannot expect them to treat the people who buy anything from them any better. All of their concern and caring on their website is absolute nonsense! It is important for people to remember this when they go and buy a game with the name Midway on the package. (not that there is anything worth buying from Midway anyway) I do not want to support people who run over others to get what they want. There are many companies out there worth supporting. We do not need these kinds of people in our sport of gaming. If they had waited two weeks until after Christmas and allowed people some warning of the closure and maybe offered a severance package I would look at this differently. But these people held out until the last minute and dumped on these people like he was Stalin and they were his Generals. This goes to show everyone around what the core management of this company really thinks about their employees.

    At this point there are few questions about the focus of David Zucker, as it was always on him and how much money could he generate for him. After he undermined Ratbag and sent them on their way he just about put Midway out of business too. I have always wondered how he managed to keep everything so hush hush or was the media hiding the truth from all of us, maybe a bit of both. I found Ratbag by accident one day surfing the Internet looking for racing games. I downloaded one of their game demos and was shocked by the wonderful way they had put together a realistic racing game with the control very close to a real driving experience. This was the closest thing to running a real car on the track I had ever seen. I still play several of their games to this day. I was hoping with the resources of Midway they were going to put out some race games. Yea, right. Lol Oh well, I have always been an optimist.

    Oh well, I am off topic so I will get back on, I do not want to see the employees at Midway suffer like the people at Ratbag, but I do want to see those monsters who have no compassion for anyone but themselves get taken down to where they have to face life without their next pay check and wonder where the house payment, food and medical is going to come from because some plebe was playing the game monopoly with their lives. I also wonder if Ratbag was able to collect the worthless Midway stock options that were used as payment when Midway purchased them. If I remember correctly the options were also contingent on the crew producing a certain project within a predetermined amount of time. This would not be possible if the studio was closed. What an interesting twist, it is like it was legally setup that way so Midway would not have to pay for the purchase of Ratbag in the long run. Man, corporate finagling, what a twisted mess. The lawyers who set it up in the first place are the only ones to understand the contract. If you could manage to ever get them in to a court of law it would be twisted into a convoluted, contentious ten-year battle costing well over the amount of the original purchase. So now what do you do?

    Well one can start by not supporting companies who treat their employees like poo. I can see no good reason for gamers to support a company where we wouldn’t work because of the way they treat their employees, plus they use questionable business tactics and don’t have the common decency to tell the people they have working for them that they will need to make a plan by such and such date, give them a months severance so they can have a small cushion while they try to put their lives back together. This is normal common decency toward another human. I am always amused when people like David Zucker leave companies like Midway. I seems like they both have so much on each other their parting of the way pretty much goes on without much comment. Nope, I don’t want anything from people or a company like that. The way the people from Ratbag were treated always bothered me quite a bit and I hoped someday the true reason for this would come out, well, I am still waiting, but it has become pretty clear. I understand the up and downs of business, but when there are people manipulating circumstances to gain profit it should be stopped. I hope this issue is not forgotten and every time someone tries to take advantage of people with these kinds of business practices, they need to be stopped in their tracks! Still irked after all these years. I will never forget how bad I felt for the 70 people who lost their jobs two weeks before Christmas. All they got that year was clean out your desk.


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