After the shaky launch of the Xbox One, Microsoft’s president of interactive entertainment, Jon Mattrick has just announced that he will be leaving Microsoft to become the CEO of Zenga.
This rather abrupt announcement, just weeks after E3 seems to have taken many, including Microsoft by surprize. Mattrick’s departure leaves the launch of the Xbox One in the hands of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.
Mr. Ballmer released this statement in a message to Microsoft employees, “Thank you, Don, for setting us on a path to completely redefine the entertainment industry. The strong leadership team at [the Interactive entertainment Business group] and their teams are well positioned to deliver the next-generation entertainment console, as well as transformative entertainment experiences, long into the future.”
Mattrick leaving Microsoft will be a big blow to the company, he is renowned in the gaming industry for his aggressive business strategy and is credited with turning the future of the Xbox around. In addition Mattrick is also responsible for managing Microsoft’s Kinect technology which has been hugely successful. Don joined Microsoft in 2007 after serving as president of Electronic Arts. He took over the position of Peter Moore, who ironically left Microsoft to work for EA sports.
Zynga, Marrtick’s new company has had its fair share of problems recently from large scale layoffs to major company executives abandoning ship. A major setback for the company is that Zynga has not been able to replicate the success it had with facebook games like farmville on to other mobile gaming devices. This coupled with it’s user base falling to record lows has not put this gaming company in a very strong position.
Can Mattrick do to Zynga what he did to Microsoft’s Xbox? Or is the company just too far into a slump to bounce back? Whether the future is positive or not for Zynga, it should be interesting to watch the company develop with its new CEO.