Electronic Arts contests injunction preventing dismissal of executive
Philippe Grenet said he used ‘clumsy’ and ‘ill-advised expression’ to female colleague
Philippe Grenet denies that, during a one-to-one video call to Tracy Simmons, a staff member based in Austin, Texas, he told her he was not ’going to pull my dick out and put it on the table to see who has the bigger dick’.
A major international video game company is contesting the continuation of an injunction granted last week over the dismissal of one its executives for making an allegedly inappropriate remark to a female colleague.
The High Court was told on Thursday that Electronic Arts (EA), which has a studio in Galway, wants the earliest possible hearing over the injunction granted to Philippe Grenet (56) over his dismissal as director of global delivery service for EA Ireland.
The temporary injunction was granted last week on an ex-parte (one side only represented) basis.
Mr Grenet denies that, during a one-to-one video call to Tracy Simmons, a staff member based in Austin, Texas, he told her he was not “going to pull my dick out and put it on the table to see who has the bigger dick”.
He says that, what he actually said was: “I don’t want to compare the length of my dick”.
He accepts the remark was a clumsy, inelegant and ill-advised expression but says it means he “did not want to challenge” that particular person on a work matter.
He claims there was no proper investigation into Ms Simmons’ complaint and fair procedures were not afforded to him before the dismissal decision was taken.
He also claims Ms Simmons is actuated by malice and she had not been successful after expressing an interest in the role he was appointed to.
He moved to take up the Galway job from France just a few months ago with his family.
He says he was in charge of 420 EA staff in Galway and another 80 in Texas.
When the case returned to court on Thursday, Oisín Quinn SC, for Mr Grenet, said his side had received two affidavits from the EA side and needed time to reply to them.
Mark Connaughton SC, for EA, said his client had come to court ready for the hearing straight away. He said EA had dealt in its affidavits with the allegations made by Mr Grenet and he could not understand what difficulties arise given this was now a question of law. His side was very anxious to get on with the case, counsel said.
Mr Quinn said the affidavits raised a number of points and there was “a lot at stake” for his client.
Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds adjourned the case to next week.