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Roy Bahat, head of News Corp.'s IGN Entertainment, to step down

The president of News Corp.'s gaming property IGN Entertainment is leaving the company.

Roy Bahat sent an email Friday to the San Francisco company’s approximately 350 employees saying he had decided to step down as president, but will remain on IGN’s board.

“It has become clear that now is the time to refresh the process of looking at strategic options for the business,” Bahat said in the email.

News Corp. had been working for a year to bring in an outside investor to spin off the division it acquired in 2005 for $680 million. After the protracted process failed to yield results, Bahat chose to step aside.

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David Martin, IGN’s chief financial officer, will serve as acting president as News Corp. continues to explore its options.

It’s unclear why News Corp., which managed to unload its struggling Myspace social network in 2011, has yet to find a partner interested in IGN, whose online properties are popular with young males, especially IGN’s core video game news and reviews, along with its YouTube channel and its AskMen site.

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