Blake Krikorian becomes corporate VP for Microsoft's Xbox unit; acquisition of R2 Studios confirmed.
Microsoft announced this morning that Slingbox co-creator Blake Krikorian has been named corporate vice president for the company's Interactive Entertainment Business (IEB), which includes its Xbox unit. Krikorian will report to IEB chief product officer Marc Whitten.
Microsoft also confirmed today that it has acquired Krikorian's id8 Group R2 Studios, which The Wall Street Journal first reported last week. Microsoft reportedly beat out juggernauts like Apple and Google to grab Krikorian and R2 Studios. Terms of the acquisition were not divulged.
“I look forward to helping the team define the future of entertainment and contribute to the next decade of continued innovation,” Krikorian said in a statement.
It is not clear what R2 Studios had been developing prior to Microsoft's acquisition, though it was rumored the firm was creating technology related to "distributing and displaying digital media on TVs."
In addition to founding R2 Studios and Sling Media with his brother Jason, Krikorian served on the Amazon board and co-founded the Philips Mobile Computing Group.
Microsoft has rapidly expanded its Xbox platform from a game-specific system to a hub for on-demand, live, and streaming video content. Microsoft has recently partnered with the likes of HBO, Comcast, Netflix, and YouTube for streaming services through the system.