All Things Digital has reported that Zynga is set to close down its Los Angeles, New York, Austin and Dallas studios, in the process laying off 520 employees. The news has since been confirmed on the studio’s official blog by CEO Mark Pincus, who released the note which was sent to employees today.
“Today is a hard day for Zynga and an emotional one for every employee of our company”, Pincus said, in part. “We are saying goodbye to about 18% of our Zynga brothers and sisters.”
“None of us ever expected to face a day like today, especially when so much of our culture has been about growth.” Pincus continued, “But I think we all know this is necessary to move forward. The scale that served us so well in building and delivering the leading social gaming service on the Web is now making it hard to successfully lead across mobile and multiplatform, which is where social games are going to be played.”
“These moves, while hard to face today, represent a proactive commitment to our mission of connecting the world through games.” he added. “I want to thank every one of you for the spirit, creativity and energy that you’ve invested in Zynga. You’ve reintroduced a generation of people to gaming and through these games offered them new ways to connect with their families, make new friends and even sometimes find love.”
Zynga has also confirmed that its restructuring process will be completed by August this year. VentureBeat has also reported that while Zynga’s stock was halted in the wake of the news, after trading resumed the publisher’s stock fell 12%.
Zynga first announced their restructuring process in February, with the closure of its McKinney, Texas, and downtown Austin offices and the relocation of the teams to the already existing Dallas and north Austin offices. The company also announced it was closing the Baltimore studio, but was able to relocate all staff members who requested a transfer; approximately 30 people from the studio were ultimately laid off. This news came shortly after the studio’s founder, Brian Reynolds, left the company.