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New hire roundup: Google expands its VR team

It can be difficult keeping track of the various comings and goings in the games industry, which is why we've decided to start compiling them in semi-regular round-ups. If you have new appointments or transitions in your company that belong here, please get in touch with us here.

Amit Singh is appointed new VP of business and operations for Google's VR team - Google is taking VR seriously with its recently unveiled Daydream platform, and now it's reassigned an executive from within to lead the business charge. Singh, who was previously president of Google for Work, will lead the firm's VR business and operations teams. Prior to Google, Singh served as vice president of sales at Oracle.

Anuj Kucheria joins CrossInstall as vice president of business development - Former Chartboost executive Anuj Kucheria will "fortify relationships with key partners and stimulate development" for the specialist in creating playable mobile ads at scale. At Chartboost, he managed a team of account executives and focused on accelerating partner user acquisition.

Tim Laning joins the board of Dutch Game Garden - Tim Laning, a co-founder of Grendel Games in Leeuwarden, is now on the board of Dutch Game Garden, an organization with the aim of promoting and improving the video games industry in the Netherlands. Laning has already been making an impact in the northern part of the Netherlands; he built the curriculum of the game development program of the NHL University of Applied Sciences, ensured the financing of various projects, and helped bring together government, investors, and startup companies.

Kelvin Tuite signs as art director at Sumo Digital - Former Lionhead art director Kelvin Tuite, a BAFTA nominee, is now art director for Sumo Digital's Nottingham studio, which is the developer's third studio, complementing its Sheffield, UK and Pune, India locations. Karl Hilton, Studio Director, Sumo Digital (Nottingham) said, "It's a great opportunity for the new studio in Nottingham to have someone as experienced as Kelvin join our team."

Remote Control Productions (rcp) adds five - The European independent production house rcp has expanded with five more people. Wolfgang Stindl joins as senior account manager, Stefan Wehler fills the newly-created position of product manager, Jrgen Kayser joins as business development manager, Volker Hirsch is now creative consultant for all development teams and Stefan Kreutzer serves as business development manager film/tv. "Our new colleagues will make sure that we're able to support our teams better than ever before, true to our company slogan: 'make better games'," said CEO Hendrik Lesser.

Felipe Falanghe steps down as lead developer for Kerbal Space Program - As noted on the Kerbal Space Program forum, Felipe Falanghe, who came up with the original idea for Kerbal Space Program when Squad was transitioning from marketer to developer, has decided to step down. Development on Kerbal Space Program will continue, however. "There was a fine line we needed to stay on, lest we let the project slip and become something other than what we intended," he wrote. "That is no longer the case, and that's a very good thing. It means that conceptually, the game is complete."

Bill Mooney joins Skillz as chief product officer - As reported by TechCrunch, ex-Electronic Arts mobile vice president Bill Mooney is now leading products for Skillz, which aims to "make eSports happen for the other 99 percent." Skillz offers tech to convert games into a tournament played for cash prizes. "We expect to see major eSports tournaments coming up around titles that haven't been played this way before whether that's Word With Friends or something else," he said.

Monty Kerr signs with Zynga as senior vice president of games - According to GamesBeat, Zynga is once again seeing growth on the social casino front, and it's hired Kerr, a co-founder of rival social casino firm PlayStudios, to oversee Zynga Poker. Kerr will work with Zynga social casino game chiefs Joe Kaminkow and Lincoln Brown. To reinforce Zynga's focus on social casino games, a decision made by new CEO Frank Gibeau, Zynga also acquired Team Chaos, a 10-person company started by former Zynga veteran Andrew Busey, who will rejoin Zynga and will work with Kerr in Austin, Texas.

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