Zynga COO John Schappert resigns

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — John Schappert, the chief operating officer of online game maker Zynga Inc., has left the company after less than a year and a half on the job.

Zynga said in a regulatory filing Wednesday that Schappert's departure is effective immediately. The company lured Schappert away from video game publisher Electronic Arts Inc. last year. He was COO there, too.

Zynga declined to say whether it's replacing Schappert. But it said that Schappert's resignation is not related to any disagreement with Zynga on any matter relating to the company's operations, policies or practices.

"John has made significant contributions to the games industry throughout his career and we appreciate all that he has done for Zynga," said CEO Mark Pincus in a statement. "John leaves as a friend of the company and we wish him all the best."

Zynga's games are played mostly on Facebook. They include "FarmVille," ''CityVille" and "Mafia Wars." The company recently reported dismal second-quarter earnings and cut its guidance for 2012. Though both its user numbers and revenue increased, analysts and investors expected more.

On July 31 Zynga confirmed that it reorganized the company to integrate its Web and mobile units. That meant that Chief Mobile Officer David Ko and Steve Chiang, executive vice president of games, will oversee Zynga's game divisions and report directly to Pincus. Previously they reported to Schappert.

The changes signal that Pincus — who founded Zynga, serves as its chief product officer and controls more than half of its voting stock — is becoming more hands-on with the development of the company's games.

Shares of the San Francisco-based company fell 6 cents, or 2 percent, to $2.89 in after-hours trading. The stock had closed down 6 cents at $2.95 and priced at $10 when it went public in December.

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