Zynga CFO resigns following latest quarterly earnings report

4 Nov 2015

In the face of declining monthly users, gaming company Zynga has announced that its chief financial officer (CFO) has stepped down, with the development of some games shelved as a result.

Zynga, best known for its once highly-successful Farmville game, made the announcement about its CFO David Lee as it posted revenues of $176m, thereby breaking even, which actually surpassed market analysts’ expectations.

According to CNBC, analysts from Thomson Reuters had predicted that there would be a 3pc decline from the same time last year with expected earnings of $170m.

However, the relatively positive results somewhat hide the reality that the company has seen its monthly active users (MAU) decline by as much as 27pc year-on-year, which, along with Lee’s resignation, will see some other major changes in the company.

In its earnings call, the company’s founder and CEO, Mark Pincus, admitted that two games it had planned for release soon, Dawn of Titans and CSR2, will be postponed until next year.

“As we get closer to our players behaviour over time, we believe there are a few key areas that we can optimise to increase long-term player retention,” Pincus said. “We are able to make these hard decisions because of the cost reduction programme that we put in place earlier this year.”

Following Lee’s departure, Michelle Quejado will step in as interim CFO, but in his final remarks, Lee said the company is now doing better than when he originally joined.

“We’ve moved the majority of our business to mobile and are focused on growing our new IP and existing franchises while significantly reducing our cost structure,” he said.

Zynga has now issued a guidance of share loss equal to between six and eight cents per share as part of a $200m stock buyback.

Zynga office image via Effie Yang/Flickr

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic