It would probably be fair to say that Zynga hasn’t had the smoothed of rides over recent months…something of a understatement in all fairness As if making huge cuts to its 2012 projections and saying goodbye to a chunk of the workforce wasn’t enough, Zynga chief financial officer Dave Wehner has decided to defect for…Facebook!
That’s a pretty bitter pill to swallow, given the fact that primary business of Zynga is the creation of games for Facebook like the ever-popular FarmVille title. Wehner’s departure was announced late on Tuesday evening, by way of a statement telling of his move to take up a “senior finance position” at the social networking giant.
According to Zynga CEO Mark Pincus, Wehner was one of the company’s key driving forces and played a vital role in its success from first conception to IPO. The company officially went public in December 2011, though since then Zynga share values have plummeted a depressing 78% to hover around the paltry $2 mark.
Wehner’s seat at Zynga will be filled by one Mark Vranesh who previously held the title of company CFO between 2008 and 2010.
On a slightly more positive note, Zynga’s once head of mobile operations is also climbing the ranks to take up the title of chief operation office – the vacancy having been created in August when John Schappert departed. What’s more, the company’s had of business development Barry Cottle is to become the new chief revenue officer, while the president of games of title has been bestowed upon Steven Chiang.
“These changes come at an important time,” according to this week’s blog post by Pincus. “We are positioning ourselves for long-term growth and I’m confident that we have the breadth and depth of management talent to deliver on our mission of connecting the world through games.”
For all his optimism however, Pincus also admitted that the company still had “a lot” of work to do.
October’s early announcement of third-quarter earnings by Zynga came as a rather bleak sign of the company’s struggles – concerns compounded by confirmation that its ‘Ville’ flagship were showing signs of weakness and new games were facing significant production delays.
21-days following the unnerving revelations, Zynga slashed a painful 5% of its existing workface, closing down its office in Boston, firing workers in Austin and outlining closures in the UK and Japan.