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Jacob Settlemyre Stephanie Yu. Founding of Zynga. Founded in April 2007 by Mark Pincus. Early Funding & Acquisitions. January 2008 - $10 Million from Union Square Ventures July 2008 - $29 Million from KPCB Bought YoVille April 2009 - #1 Facebook developer, 40 Million active users

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jacob settlemyre stephanie yu
Jacob Settlemyre

Stephanie Yu

founding of zynga
Founding of Zynga
  • Founded in April 2007 by Mark Pincus
early funding acquisitions
Early Funding & Acquisitions
  • January 2008 - $10 Million from Union Square Ventures
  • July 2008 - $29 Million from KPCB
    • Bought YoVille
  • April 2009 - #1 Facebook developer, 40 Million active users
  • June 2009 – Acquired MyMiniLife
    • Launched FarmVille
early funding acquisitions1
Early Funding & Acquisitions
  • May 2010 – Five-year relationship with Facebook
  • June 2010 – Launched FrontierVille
  • December 2010 – Acquired Newtoy, renamed Zynga with Friends
  • July 1, 2011 – Began trading on NASDAQ
    • 2,000 employees
business model
Business Model
  • Runs advertisements in their games and website
  • In 2012, they began running Facebook ads and sponsored stories on their website
    • Revenue is split between Facebook and Zynga
business model cont
Business Model Cont…
  • Many games require energy or in-game currency which may run out very quickly and force users to either wait several hours to keep playing or buy more with real money
    • Zynga credits may be bought in over 28,000 stores
    • Initially this was successful because Zynga was the first company to produce Facebook apps where people could send in-game goods to their friends (e.g. crops, weapons, etc.)
      • Waiting could mean leaving the game for several hours to do something productive and coming back only to find withered crops or a lost mafia attack, so people actually bought energy/in-game currency
      • However...
even better
Even better!
  • PowerPoint Slides™ provide utility
  • Zynga credits…?
  • Released in 2009
  • Farmville 2 released in 2012
  • To begin, create a customizable avatar
  • Start with an empty farm and earn XP by plowing land, buying plants, harvesting crops, etc.
  • In-game currency includes Farm Coins and Farm Cash
    • Earn farm coins by visiting neighbors or harvesting crops
    • Seeds can be planted, then plants harvested after several minutes/hours, depending on market value of the crop
    • Crops wither 2.5 hours after they are ready to be harvested, but can be unwithered for a price
  • Can send and receive certain crops, livestock, and decorations to and from friends (the “social” aspect of the game
  • Zynga produced multiple games with the exact same model (Cityville, Mafia Wars, Frontier Wars, etc.)
  • Demo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6jdv-oOYPQ
zynga with friends
Zynga with Friends



Demo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMB0kQL3hRQ

online interaction
Online Interaction
  • Real Life Interaction  Continuous
  • Online Interaction  Discrete
  • Online/Couch Video Games  Synchronized Gameplay
  • Online Social Games  Asynchronous Gameplay
business success
Business… success?
  • Zynga revolutionized the gaming industry by designing the social aspect of the game (e.g. being able to play with friends and send/receive items on Facebook)
  • However, as more gaming companies began to take on after them, their Farmville-like games became less popular
    • Boring: no actual gameplay, just clicks
    • Repetitive: once you played one, you played them all
    • Expensive: can’t play for longer than a few minutes, but can’t stay off the game very long or risk something (e.g. crops) dying, so must buy energy to decrease wait time
  • When their “With Friends” games (particularly Words with Friends) came out, sales went back up; however, eventually that died down as well
  • People were also getting annoyed with Facebook spam