Just days after Zynga (Nasdaq: ZNGA) lost its chief revenue officer Wilson Kriegel, the former guru of OMGPOP's “Draw Something,” reports have surfaced that the San Francisco-based social game developer is losing yet another executive. This time, it's chief security officer Nils Puhlmann.
The latest resignation brings the total number of C-level executive departures from the struggling game developer to 12 in the two months since its weak quarterly earnings report sent the company into disarray in July.
According to his public company profile, Puhlmann joined Zynga as CSO in 2009. In his position there, Puhlmann reported to Debra Chrapaty, Zynga’s chief information officer, and was responsible for managing all security risks for the company.
Puhlmann’s departure was first reported by TechCrunch late Wednesday afternoon, and was later confirmed by VentureBeat. While both articles cited anonymous sources close to the matter, Zynga has refused to comment on "reports and speculation." Puhlmann still lists Zynga as his current employer on his LinkedIn profile.
Despite Zynga’s silence on the current round of departures, a company spokesperson speaking to AllThingsD last month said that the departures were not peculiar or surprising since the company already has a low attrition rate, adding that "it’s not at all surprising that some would move on and or retire post-IPO."
Details on Puhlmann’s departure and future plans aren’t yet available. Since all of Zynga’s products are freemium games or mobile apps, the company generates revenue through in-game transactions, which makes security particularly important for maintaining the company’s user base and encouraging them to share financial information with Zynga’s mobile and Facebook-based apps.
This concern only becomes more important as the company expands its real-money gambling operations, which the company announced late last week with the hire of online gambling veteran Maytal Ginzburg Osha as a new chief operating officer.
Other recent high profile departures include chief operating officer John Schappert and chief marketing and revenue officer Jeff Karp, both of whom came to the company from industry stalwart and current legal rival to Zynga Electronic Arts Inc. (Nasdaq: EA), as well as infrastructure chief technology officer Allan Leinwand, and chief creative officer Mike Verdu.
Despite the two departures this week, Zynga’s stock continues to recover after Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook comments helped nudge the company’s share prices back above $3. Share prices jumped slightly to $3.23 in late afternoon trading on Thursday.