Atari brings in new communications SVP as it works to revamp brand

NEW YORK: Atari has named Patricia Steele its new SVP of communications as part of an ongoing attempt to reinvigorate one of Generation X's most revered brands.

NEW YORK: Atari has named Patricia Steele its new SVP of communications as part of an ongoing attempt to reinvigorate one of Generation X's most revered brands.

Steele will oversee all external and internal communications, including media relations, corporate positioning, and branding.

Steele said she will focus on helping Atari grab its share of the growing $10 billion video-game market - though she conceded that the brand hasn't fully realized its potential in recent years. Atari's brand resonance stems more from the days when it developed video-game systems than any recent hits. Its 2600 console from the 1980s was one of the first blockbuster home-gaming systems.

Atari now focuses on producing games, rather than consoles. That market, however, is largely dominated by Electronic Arts and Activision, thanks to a steady stream of popular products.

But Atari already has a brand synonymous with video games, and the company needs to develop those hit games to help broaden and enhance the brand, Steele said.

She said she also plans to take that message to Wall Street Steele's appointment reflects the latest step by Atari to strengthen its senior management team. She will report to Jim Caparro, CEO and president, who joined Atari in November.

From 2002 to last year, Steele was the executive vice president of corporate communications at NBC.

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