Yesterday, word came in that former Zynga COO John Schappert has bid farewell to Zynga. Big news, but not especially surprising: At the end of July, Schappert was bumped from his position as Zynga’s COO, possibly because the company experienced a drop in value and popularity in the year that he oversaw game production.
According to Zynga CEO Mark Pincus, Schappert parted ways with the company amicably. “We can confirm that John Schappert has left Zynga and its Board of Directors effective immediately,” Pincus said in a statement. “John has made significant contributions to the games industry throughout his career and we appreciate all that he has done for Zynga. John leaves as a friend of the company and we wish him all the best.’
Zynga’s chief mobile officer David Ko and executive VP Steve Chiang are currently overseeing game development in Schappert’s place, and now both report directly to Pincus instead of Schappert.
Zynga has mobile adaptations of its most popular Facebook games, but fresh mobile content would be even more welcome
While Zynga had some troubles while Schappert was in charge of game development, it’s not likely that the former EA COO is totally to blame for the company’s decline. That said, it’ll be interesting to see where Zynga goes from here–especially with David Ko working directly under Pincus. Zynga has been lagging on mobile development, and it obviously seeks to step up its game, so to speak. We’ll see if this re-direction of energy will be enough to put the company back on top.