updated 07:33 pm EDT, Wed April 23, 2014
Embattled studio shift to mobile so far failing to gain traction
In conjunction with Zynga's quarterly results, new CEO Don Mattrick revealed that founder Mark Pincus is stepping down as chief product officer at the embattled game producer. Mattrick also announced that Alex Garden, ex-general manager of Xbox Live, has been hired as president of Zynga Studios.
"Mark has built Zynga into an entertainment leader, turning brands like FarmVille, Words With Friends and Zynga Poker into household names and daily habits for millions of consumers," wrote Mattrick of Pincus' departure.
After losing a large number of gamers on Facebook, Zynga laid off more than 100 employees in three locations in October, and 500 more in June. Two insider trading suits are still pending against the company, and follow investigations of Zynga staffers and Pincus himself.
Pincus and other high-ranking Zynga employees are accused of selling 43 million shares of stock in April at $12 per share, when employees and other early investors were banned from selling until May. By then, the stockholders claim, the business had already begun to slump.
Continuing a skid, the company lost $61.2 million in the first quarter. In the same time period last year, the company earned $4.1 million. Revenue and earnings reported were in line with market expectations.