The Head of Soaring Xbox Is Leaving for Flailing Zynga Because He Needs the Sun

The Head of Soaring Xbox Is Leaving for Flailing Zynga Because He Needs the Sun

In case you hadn't heard, Zynga is totally falling apart, but the head of Xbox doesn't care because the butt of all of social-gaming startup jokes is located in San Francisco's hip, sunny Mission district, not Microsoft's dreary, awful Redmond, Washington. And, you know, because he might be its next CEO. Don Mattrick, the president of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business, is leaving, sources tell AllThingsD's Kara Swisher — a report confirmed by The Wall Street Journal's Evelyn Rusli, who says Mattrick "has been in talks for [a senior] role, possibly CEO." This would all be incredibly curious since Xbox is a gaming giant with a major new console on the way — even if it has taken a few missteps of late — and Zynga just fired 250 people and has a stock price just over $3 per share. Well, curious until the real reason comes out. Mattrick wants to leave rainy Seattle/Redmond for the sunnier pastures of Silicon Valley — even if he has to give up this sick pad. "The Canadian native has long wanted to move back to the Bay area, where has has a home, said sources, another important factor in this move," writes Swisher. Ohhhh, it's all coming together now. Though, someone should warn Mattrick that San Fran can get gloomy. (Even if Mark Twain never said it, it's true!

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This isn't all about the location, of course. Mattrick could get a title bump to co-CEO — along with Zynga co-founder and professional screwball/crybaby Mark Pincus — according to Swisher's sources. People on the Zynga side of things are delighted by the news already, with the not exactly stable stock up a whole 11 percent... which is only 30 cents per share, but still — that's a nice little bump from utter stagnation. A sunny change indeed!

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