Zynga cuts more than 500 employees

Bad news from social game publisher Zynga today - they've cut 18 percent of their workforce, a layoff of more than 500 people, according to a blog post on the Zynga Web site.

Zynga's been in trouble for a while. The company had huge early success with social games like FarmVille and Words With Friends, but it's had a tough couple of years. In 2012 the company purchased OMGPOP, a New York-based indie developer riding high on the release of its hit mobile game Draw Something, a Pictionary-style game in which players take turns creating illustrations to depict keywords. OMGPOP's CEO left Zynga earlier this year.

Zynga paid more than $180 million to acquire OMGPOP, which many analysts questioned at the time, given the company's relatively limited scope. OMGPOP was one of the last in a series of expensive acquisitions Zynga made, and the company's stock is a pale shade of its IPO price.

In a letter sent to employees, Zynga CEO Mark Pincus said, "The scale that served us so well in building and delivering the leading social gaming service on the Web is now making it hard to successfully lead across mobile and multiplatform, which is where social games are going to be played."

Pincus suggested in the article that the company's future lies in the mobile gaming space, as opposed to social gaming on PCs and Macs.

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Peter Cohen

Managing Editor of iMore, Mac and gaming specialist and all-around technologist. Follow him on Twitter @flargh

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Reader comments

Zynga cuts more than 500 employees

2 Comments

Never played Farmville, but Time magazine named it as one of "The 50 Worst Inventions." Just do a web search for "The 50 Worst Inventions Farmville" and the Time article should be right at the top. (Unless your search engine is as spammed up as much as Google Search is these days.)

What he said: "The scale that served us so well in building and delivering the leading social gaming service on the Web ..."

What he meant: "Flash ..."

What he said: "... is now making it hard to successfully lead across mobile and multiplatform, which is where social games are going to be played."

What he meant: "... is dead on mobile devices, and Draw Something was a dud."

probably because no one plays those junky games anymore. i never liked any of their games to be honest. they should probably just cut their losses and give up