16 Jan 2018, 17:38 PMwuff
They would have to relocate large amounts of staff.
16 Jan 2018, 17:56 PMMajorBloodnok
He is probably correct, but I do not think it is as straightforward as you might imagine.
I doubt if Canada has the equivalent of the European Union Business Transfers Directive.. TUPE (the UK version) can catch the unscrupulous practice whereby a company tries to set up an overseas subsidiary outside the EU in order to avoid the impact of TUPE. But TUPE does not apply in reverse, as far as I know.
Therefore, if SEGA transferred the COH assets to CA in UK, it would be free of TUPE, but what would occur with Relic?
1) SEGA would have to pay off the Relic staff
2) SEGA would have to pay off the Relic peripherals. e.g the NY servers
3) SEGA would have to dispose of the Va building
4) Relic would have to pay off its taxes
Could an inter-company transfer avoid all this debt paying? I doubt it, since interested creditors like the Canada tax authorities would be able to argue that Relic had a worth in any games which they transferred to CA. (This is not new, since THQ got pinned on the same kind of avoidance issue in 2012). Therefore, SEGA are unlikely to be able to write off Relic debts in North America.
Also, SEGA will be aware that if they transfer the COH IP to CA, they are placing themselves further in the UK, which is itself in the course of a highly unsettling Brexit for business. Indications are that the Japanese do not want to invest further in UK, if UK hives off from the EU, bcs the EU market is much bigger. Therefore, if SEGA invests further in CA, it is potentially jumping from one problem to another, if tariffs emerge between UK and EU.
Nowaday you can set up a dev studio everywhere in the world. We already have seen studiso being taken away their IP to be given to another one. The IP could be moved to UK or Creative Assembly could open a branch in Canada. Or a new studio could be indpendantly open in Canada and be patronised by Creative Assembly.
THen of course it cost a lot of money to shut down an office with hundred of people in it but do not believe it can't happen, if so, Sega is probably already doing the financial step for that.
From the anonymous message we read, what scare me the most is the feeling nothing had change since DOW3 failure, same management rules are in place. I have been working on this kind of toxic environment - I can visualize any argument the anonymous is giving - and from experience, there is little you can do except cutting management multiple heads (because at the end, all your management is like that by contagion). And sometime it is cheaper and faster to simply let it die and build a new structure somewhere else.