Riot Games investigating CEO for claims of gender discrimination

The gaming studio has confirmed that it's investigating CEO Nicolo Laurent following gender discrimination accusations.


Updated at 5:28 p.m. PT on 2/9/21:

Riot Games issued an additional statement to Rod "Slasher" Breslau, where they gave this statement: “To clarify, this individual (the plantiff) was terminated following more than a dozen complaints from both employees and external partners and after multiple coaching discussions to try and address these concerns."

Riot Games is still in the midst of an ongoing lawsuit regarding gender discrimination claims at the studio from a few years back. Now, new claims have surfaced, causing the studio to take a closer look at its core leadership. Riot Games has confirmed that it’s currently investigating claims of gender discrimination made against CEO Nicolo Laurent.

A former Riot Games employee filed a legal complaint in January 2021. In her filing, she accused CEO Nicolo Laurent of gender discrimination and sexual harassment. The ex-employee states that Laurent made unwanted sexual advances towards her, going as far to ask that she travel with him outside of work. In one anecdote, she says that Nicolo Laurent suggested that one way for female employees to deal with pandemic stress was to “have kids.”

Riot Spokesperson Joe Hixson issued a statement on the matter. “Core to giving Rioters confidence in our commitment to culture transformation is taking all allegations of harassment or discrimination very seriously, thoroughly investigating claims and taking action against anyone who is found to have violated our policies,” he stated. Riot Games is actively investigating these claims, but it’s yet to be seen what repercussions or consequences will come from it.

These claims are concerning, especially when you consider Riot Games' past allegations and ongoing situation. We’ll continue to monitor the situation, and will update this story with any new information.

News Editor

Donovan is a young journalist from Maryland, who likes to game. His oldest gaming memory is playing Pajama Sam on his mom's desktop during weekends. Pokémon Emerald, Halo 2, and the original Star Wars Battlefront 2 were some of the most influential titles in awakening his love for video games. After interning for Shacknews throughout college, Donovan graduated from Bowie State University in 2020 with a major in broadcast journalism and joined the team full-time. He is a huge Scream nerd and film fanatic that will talk with you about movies and games all day. You can follow him on twitter @Donimals_

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