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Zynga narrows losses, picks up DeNA point man as new COO

Zynga has confirmed the appointment of EA veteran and former DeNA West CEO Clive Downie as its new chief operating officer, and also announced a strong quarterly performance narrowing its net losses.
Rebounding with an optimistic quarterly earnings call with investors today, Zynga has confirmed the appointment of mobile and triple-A veteran Clive Downie as its new chief operating officer. Downie comes to Zynga with 15 years of experience as a vice president of marketing for Electronic Arts. More recently, Downie served as CEO of DeNA West, overseeing the Japanese mobile firm's North American and European arms. "I joined Zynga because I believe it has the ability to unlock disruptive new ideas that span gaming genres, markets and services," stated Downie, in conjunction with the announcement. Downie, who is acquainted with Zynga CEO Don Mattrick going back to their days at EA, will report directly to Mattrick as the company's COO. "[Downie] is a seasoned leader with a deep understanding of consumer, marketing and mobile engagement, international experience operating both in EMEA and Japan and a rich background in game publishing -- all of which are incredibly valuable as Zynga navigates its move to mobile," said Mattrick, in the same announcement. DeNA West has announced that it would be promoting its current chief financial officer, Shintaro Asako, to replace Downie as CEO. Downie's appointment was timed in conjunction with Zynga's financial quarter earning call with investors, where the company reported quarterly performance well above guidance, with bookings of $152 million (versus a projected $125-150 million). While revenue was down ($203 million, a year-on-year decrease of 36 percent), the company's net losses have also been narrowed, down to $68,000 (versus $52 million in the same three-month period in 2012). Following the call, Zynga's shares rose 13 percent.

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