Yves Guillemot is the CEO of Ubisoft Entertainment SA. He has been the CEO of the company since he and his four brothers founded the company. Today, Ubisoft’s size means that Guillemot can be considered one of the most influential figures in the video game industry. What are 10 things you didn’t know about Yves Guillemot?
1. His family lived in Brittany
The Guillemot family ran an agricultural support company serving farmers in Brittany and the surrounding regions. For those unfamiliar, Brittany is a French province that was once an independent kingdom in its own right. In fact, the Celtic League considers it one of the six Celtic nations, which can be explained by the fact that it was the target of British immigration from what is now Wales, as well as from the southwestern peninsula of Great Britain in the 4th, 5th and 6th centuries. This is what the name of the region changes to the Latin Britannia, which means “land of the British” before it undergoes further evolution.
2. He and his brothers worked for the family business.
In total, there were five children in the Guillemot family, who were Christian, Claude, Gérard, Michel, and Yves. Guillemot’s children were involved in the family business in various ways, including sales, distribution, and accounting, even before going to college. After going to college, they returned to the family business with even more entrepreneurial experience in order to improve it.
3. The Guillemot brothers chose diversification
At the time, agribusinesses were experiencing a downward trend. As a result, the Guillemot brothers recommended diversification in response to the changing business environment. In his case, this meant selling other products that could be useful to his existing customer base. Something that eventually led the Guillemot brothers to sell both computers and software. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the latter included video games.
4. Gained a firm foundation by taking advantage of price differences
Over time, the Guillemot brothers realized that it was cheaper for them to buy computers and software in the UK before shipping their purchases to France than to buy the same products from a French supplier. Because of this, they started a business selling computers and software, followed by another business selling hardware. Ultimately, the Guillemot brothers decided that they should get involved on the video game development side as well, resulting in the founding of Ubisoft.
5. The first game was Zombie
Ubisoft’s first game was Zombie. Based on the name, it should come as no surprise to learn that it was a zombie game. To be exact, Zombie was an action-adventure zombie game in which the player explored a shopping mall from a first-person perspective. The title proved to be a critical and commercial success, fueling Ubisoft’s efforts.
6. There was concern about an EA acquisition
By the early 2000s, Ubisoft had become a prominent international name. However, the Guillemot brothers made a mistake by not remembering that they were running a public corporation in a competitive environment, so they were shocked when EA bought a 19.9 percent stake. This caused widespread concern among Ubisoft stakeholders, as shown by how Ubisoft employees at the time feared how an EA acquisition would change the internal environment of the company. However, that fear never materialized. In fact, EA ended up selling its shares in 2010.
7. There was an attempted acquisition of Vivendi
That said, the Guillemot brothers faced an attempted takeover by French media conglomerate Vivendi from 2015 to 2018. This was met with fervent opposition from the Guillemot brothers, mostly because they feared a difference in philosophies. companies destroyed everything they had managed to build. In June 2016, Vivendi had managed to take over the mobile game publisher Gameloft, which was also owned by the Guillemot brothers; By 2017, there was a widespread expectation that Vivendi would be successful in a similar acquisition of Ubisoft, especially since it had already managed to secure a larger ownership stake than that of the Guillemot brothers and intended to buy more shares. However, the additional efforts of the Guillemot brothers combined with Vivendi’s own internal considerations eventually convinced the latter to back away from the brink of success, with the result that he had divested …