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November 13, 2012

Zynga CFO Leaves for Facebook

By Rachel Ramsey, TMCnet Web Editor

The creator of FarmVille, Draw Something, Words with Friends, Pioneer Trail and many other social games, Zynga (News - Alert) Inc., has experienced an executive shakeup after the close of trading Tuesday. Its Chief Financial Officer, David Wehner, is leaving the company "to pursue a senior finance position with Facebook (News - Alert) Inc.”

Wehner’s title will be vice president of corporate finance and business planning, Facebook said. Mark Vranesh, Zynga's chief accounting officer, will become the company's new CFO, returning to a position he held from 2008 to 2010, when Zynga will still a private company.

“I have greatly enjoyed working closely with Mark Pincus and the rest of the team,” Wehner said. “The time I spent at Zynga has been an exciting chapter in my career as we led the rapid development of social gaming. Mark Vranesh and I have been close partners during my tenure at Zynga, and I wish my colleagues well as the company continues to deliver on its vision.”

Additionally, Zynga said David Ko, its chief mobile officer, will now become chief operations officer, Barry Cottle, the company's executive vice president for business and corporate development, will take over as chief revenue officer and Steven Chiang, executive vice president of games, is now president of games at the company.

The appointments seek to fill some of the holes left by executives who’ve left Zynga in recent months. John Schappert, Zynga’s chief operating officer, left in August after less than a year and a half on the job. Schappert’s exit was followed by that of Mike Verdu, the company’s chief creative officer. And in September Jeff Karp, the chief marketing and chief revenue officer, left the company.

“Dave remains a good friend to us all, and we wish him success in his next role,” said Mark Princus, Zynga founder and CEO. “Mark, David, Barry, and Steve are rooted in our culture, committed to our future, and part of the talented bench of leadership at Zynga. I’m confident that we have the right team to deliver on our mission of connecting the world through games and position us for long-term growth.

Zynga also reaffirmed its 2012 financial outlook, which it gave when it reported its third-quarter results in October. Zynga's shares rose 1.4 percent in after-hours trading.

Edited by Rachel Ramsey
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