Zynga jumps on report it may name new CEO

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Zynga Inc. jumped Monday after the technology blog AllThingsD reported that Don Mattrick, the president of Microsoft's Xbox business, is joining the company, possibly as CEO.

THE SPARK: The move would mean that Mark Pincus, the founder and current CEO of the troubled online game maker, is stepping aside. Representatives for Zynga and Microsoft did not immediately respond to messages for comment Monday afternoon. Citing multiple, unnamed sources close to the situation, AllThingsD said Mattrick is close to taking a top job at Zynga, "possibly" as CEO.

BACKGROUND: Zynga has been struggling to keep people interested in — and paying for — its online games, which include "FarmVille" and "Words With Friends." It announced in June that it was cutting 520 jobs, or about 18 percent of its workforce to save money.

SHARE ACTION: San Francisco-based Zynga's stock rose 27 cents, or 9.7 percent, to $3.05 in afternoon trading. The stock has traded in a 52-week range of $2.09 to $5.61.