This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Brain Drain at Zynga: CFO Leaves For Facebook

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Zynga (ZNGA - Get Report) announced that Dave Wehner resigned as Chief Financial Officer on Tuesday, the latest high-profile departure at the social gamer. Any concerns about Wehner's exit, though, could be overblown, says Jefferies analyst Brian Pitz.

In an analyst note discussing the transition, Pitz noted a level of comfort with the move, as Chief Accounting Officer Mark Vranesh takes back the role of Zynga CFO. He was previously the company's finance chief from 2008 to 2010, having overseen the company's IPO. "We have worked with Mark in the past, and are extremely comfortable with the transition," Pitz wrote in his note. He rates shares "hold" with a $2.50 price target.

Wehner is leaving the company to take a senior finance position at Facebook (FB - Get Report).

There were other organizational changes at Zynga this week. David Ko, who had been Zynga's Chief Mobile Officer, has been promoted to COO. Barry Cottle was named Chief Revenue Officer, and Steven Chiang was named President of Games.

"Dave remains a good friend to us all and we wish him success in his next role," said CEO and founder Mark Pincus in the press release. "Mark, David, Barry and Steve are rooted in our culture, committed to our future and part of the talented bench of leadership at Zynga. I'm confident we have the right team to deliver on our mission of connecting the world through games and position us for long-term growth."

Others believe that Wehner's departure at a time of uncertainty for the company will only add to the risks for the San Francisco-based social gaming company.

Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson called the loss "a major distraction for the Zynga management team, development teams and social gaming partners." He lowered his price target to $2.50, but kept his "neutral" rating.

Zynga has lost a number of key executives in recent months, including the company's Chief Creative Officer, Mike Verdu, the Chief Marketing and Revenue Officer, Jeff Karp, and others. Wehner's transition is the latest, though the fact that the company reaffirmed its 2012 financial outlook is a good sign for the company.

Zynga shares are higher in Wednesday trading, up 3.23% to $2.18.

Interested in more on Zynga? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for this stock.

--Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

>Contact by Email.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
ZNGA $2.38 0.00%
FB $117.58 0.00%
AAPL $93.74 0.00%
GOOG $693.01 0.00%
TSLA $240.76 0.00%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,773.64 -57.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,065.30 -10.51 -0.51%
NASDAQ 4,775.3580 -29.9330 -0.62%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs