Zynga hires chief of new markets

Sat, Sep 15, 2012, 01:00

ONLINE GAMING firm Zynga has hired Maytal Olsha, a former online-gambling executive, as its chief operating officer of new markets.

The appointment comes ahead of the game maker’s plans to offer real-money wagering next year.

Ms Olsha, previously a senior vice-president at 888 Holdings, will help oversee gambling strategy and development at Zynga, the company said.

Zynga is optimistic the easing of regulations in the US and abroad will let it expand into real-money online gambling, a market that researcher H2 Gambling Capital estimates may be worth $30 billion (€22.8 billion) next year.

The company plans to offer a gambling product in international markets in the first half of 2013, chief executive Mark Pincus said on a call with analysts earlier this year.

The appointment follows the departures of at least eight managers since early August, as Zynga’s stock decline erodes the value of equity used to compensate employees.

Earlier this week, the company disclosed the resignation of Jeff Karp, who was chief marketing officer, in a filing. – (Bloomberg)