Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA) has appointed John Doerr, the high-profile venture capitalist, to its board of directors as the game maker transforms itself from being a social gaming company to offer a broader set of mobile and real-money games.
Doerr who is also a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers is a popular figure in venture capital. The high-profile venture capitalist has been known for his investments in Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), Netscape, Sun Microsystems and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG). Doerr also sits on a number of other tech companies’ boards like Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), Coursera and Flipboard.
At the time when Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA) went public in December 2011, KPCB was the company’s biggest VC backers with Doerr leading those investments; it is still not clear how much of Zynga’s stock are owned by Kleiner.
Doerr has always held, Zynga and its CEO Mark Pincus, in very high regard. When Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA) was still a private company in 2010, Doerr described it as “most rapidly growing, most profitable, with the most happy customers that Kleiner Perkins has ever backed.”
Zynga CEO, Mark Pincus said in a statement, “John has been a supporter of Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA) since our early days, and truly understands our core values and mission.” The CEO added that John has the experience of working with some well-known companies globally at different positions and his experience will be a valuable asset for the company’s leadership team.
The game maker has been struggling since its IPO to live up to the expectations to deliver social gaming hits. The company is trying hard to move aggressively towards mobile games, as well as real-money games. An intense competition in the social gaming landscape and changing user preferences resulted in number of games and studio closures as the company dealt sliding revenues. The company has also witnessed the departure of many of its key executives, and since going public; the company’s stock price has dropped by almost 64 percent.
In a hope to reverse its fortune, Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA) recently went live with its first real-money gambling stint in the U.K. with plans to expand further to other markets in Europe and U.S.
The social gaming company’s other board members include Sunil Paul, Stanley Meresman, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Mark Pincus, Owen Van Natta, Bing Gordon, Ellen Siminoff and Reid Hoffman.