Pincus overhauls Zynga as sales, profits and stocks slide
Technology Briefs:Zynga's chief operating officer, John Schappert, who was wooed from Electronic Arts last year, was stripped of his role overseeing game development in a reorganisation aimed at reviving growth and making more money from mobile services, people familiar with the matter said.
David Ko, who runs Zynga's mobile operations, and Steve Chiang, executive vice president of games, both of whom reported to Mr Schappert, now report directly to chief executive officer Mark Pincus, according to sources.
Mr Pincus embarked on the overhaul in early July, at the close of a quarter marked by slowing sales growth and a drop in demand for virtual goods.
Mr Schappert, lured with a pay package worth $42.8 million, has lost support within the company and taken some of the blame for its underperformance, the people said.
Stephanie Hess, a spokeswoman for San Francisco-based Zynga, declined to comment.
The stock has dropped 71 per cent since the company held its initial public offering in December.
The decline accelerated last week after Zynga reported sales and profit that missed analysts' predictions. - (Bloomberg)
Last chance to enter James Dyson design competition
Engineering students are being given a final chance to enter the James Dyson Design Award, with the deadline for entries closing this evening.
The international award is seeking inventions that solve problems from young engineers and designers.
The prize fund includes a top award of €12,800, and a further €12,800 for the design department at the winner's college. Entries can also compete for the national Irish James Dyson Award, which offers €1,280 in prize money.
It is open to university students of product design, industrial design or engineering, and will also accept entries from graduates within four years of graduation.
Previous winning designs include everything from buoyancy aids to crop irrigators. The one common theme is that they all approach the problem from a different angle.
Last-minute entrants can submit their ideas at jamesdysonaward.org.
MLNet becomes Airfibre after management buyout
Business-to-business internet firm MLNet has rebranded to Airfibre, following a management buyout in June.
The company was separated from UK business Metronet following the management bid led by chief executive John Earley, which valued the internet and cloud services specialist at €18 million.
The firm was established in 2008, and has more than 50 corporate customers in Dublin and Cork, specialising in providing services to business and Government organisations.
"The original name was chosen to reflect the strategic partnership that we have with Metronet in the UK, but to be honest, the name is a bit of a mouthful and it doesn't appropriately reflect what we do," said managing director Martin Smyth.
The company has also moved offices, to Leopardstown Business Campus, and said it planned a recruitment drive in the next 12 months.
Mr Earley said the name reflected the business activities of the company. He predicted exponential growth for the firm as it introduced cloud services and increases its core business.
"We now have the foundation to repeat the success of a business model that was executed in the UK and which established our partner - Metronet (UK) Limited - as a serious player in the telecommunications market over there," he said.