Report: Zynga cutting nearly one fifth of global workforce

UPDATED: Zynga confirms cutting its global workforce by 18 percent as it restructures with a focus on mobile channels.
Written by Rachel King, Contributor

The downward spiral for Zynga appears to be getting worse based on new reports on Monday.

While the exact figures still haven't been revealed, various tech media outlets are reporting that the online gaming company is cutting between 18 and 20 percent of its global workforce.

It is expected that the San Francisco-headquartered operation will be shuttering a few of its offices. One senior UI designer at Zynga's Los Angeles office confirmed as much via Twitter, specifying 55 layoffs there.

However, news of significant layoffs and financial cutbacks likely won't come as much of a surprise to anyone following the beleaguered business.

Zynga has had a rough time of it since its tumultuous initial public offering in December 2011, placing it (arguably alongside Facebook) as one of the several botched IPOs by consumer tech companies in the last couple years.

Most of the trouble (at least from a public standpoint) has been most visible by the long string of exits by senior executives.

We pinged Zynga for comment, and we'll update this story when we hear back.

UPDATE: Zynga PR confirmed that the company "announced a substantial cost reduction and restructuring that affected 18% of our employees worldwide."

That translates to approximately 520 jobs. The workforce reduction, described to be spanning all verticals, is expected to be complete by August.

Zynga CEO and founder Mark Pincus also penned a memo addressed to all Zynga employees, explaining that the restructuring is part of a revised mobile business strategy.

Here's an excerpt:

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.

These moves, while hard to face today, represent a proactive commitment to our mission of connecting the world through games. Mobile and touch screens are revolutionizing gaming. Our opportunity is to make mobile gaming truly social by offering people new, fun ways to meet, play and connect. By reducing our cost structure today we will offer our teams the runway they need to take risks and develop these breakthrough new social experiences.

A full copy is on Zynga's website now.

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