Zynga loses 3 more top execs after disastrous Q2


Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA) has lost three high-ranking executives in the past month, increasing the number of top staffers who've ankled the struggling social gaming firm since its December 2011 initial public offering, Bloomberg reports.

Citing sources familiar with the moves, the report states that Zynga Senior Vice President of Games John Osvald, Vice President of Games Nathan Etter and Vice President of Product Jesse Janosov have all exited the firm's ranks over the past several weeks. A TechCrunch source also confirmed the departures. Etter has already updated his LinkedIn profile to reflect his new position as a vice president at Disney, while the current status of Osvald and Janosov is unknown. A Zynga spokesperson declined to comment on the changes.

At the time Zynga went public, it was the largest gaming publisher across the Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) platform thanks to hit titles like FarmVille and Mafia Wars. But the company has struggled to maintain its initial success while transitioning its efforts to the mobile platform, and over the past 18 months Zynga has hemorrhaged executives. Among the most notable defections: Zynga Treasurer Mike Gupta left the gaming company for Twitter; Chief Financial Officer David Wehner exited to accept a senior finance post at Facebook; COO John Schappert resigned after he was stripped of his responsibilities as head of social gaming development; Chief Creative Officer Mike Verdu left to launch his own startup; CTO of infrastructure Bill Leinwand joined enterprise IT firm ServiceNow; and former OMGPOP CEO Dan Porter stepped down a year after Zynga acquired the startup's Draw Something for $180 million.

Zynga CEO Mark Pincus stepped down earlier this month, replaced by Don Mattrick, previously head of Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Xbox business. Pincus continues to serve as Zynga's chairman and chief product officer.

Last week Zynga reported second-quarter earnings that showed decreases in virtually all of the company's key metrics. Zynga's revenue clocked in at $231 million, down 31 percent year-over-year, and its monthly active users decreased from 306 million in the second quarter of 2012 to 187 million in the second quarter of 2013, down 39 percent year-over-year. In mobile, Zynga recorded 16 million mobile daily active users and 57 million mobile monthly active users.

In tandem with the dismal earnings report, Zynga said it will not pursue a license for real-money gaming in the United States, and will instead refocus on its existing free-to-play social gaming business. Speaking on Zynga's quarterly earnings call, Mattrick said the firm anticipates two to four quarters of "volatility'' as he evaluates its business and product line and formulates a new strategy.

For more:
- see this Bloomberg article
- read this TechCrunch article

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