Zynga’s Mark Pincus listed among “Worst CEOs of 2012″

Markpincus2 300x267 Zyngas Mark Pincus listed among Worst CEOs of 2012

Courtesy: Wikipedia

The third annual list of the year’s worst CEOs includes the top dog at Zynga, Mark Pincus, as he struggles to turn his gaming company’s sinking fortunes around.

The list has been put together the past few years by Sydney Finklestein, a professor at Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business. He’s also written 11 books about corporate leadership, including Why Smart Executives Fail and Think Again: Why Good Leaders Make Bad Decisions.

Finklestein notes that Zynga’s stock fell 75 percent this year, and the company is bleeding executives looking for an exit. He notes Pincus himself said he made “rookie mistakes”, chief among them relying too much on Facebook for revenue. The fact that Zynga’s CEO also got rid of 16 million shares of his own company once their IPO lockout ended is also pretty telling.

Zynga also continues to face legal trouble with EA over their upcoming game The Ville, which EA says smacks of being a copy-paste job of The Sims Social. They hope to turn things around by going after the lucrative online gambling market, but it’s going to take a lot of time to get the proper permits, which may be time Zynga and Fincus just don’t have.

[ via Bloomberg ]

About Russell Jones

By day, Russell works in local TV news. By night, he plays and writes about video games for VGW and his personal blog, The Gentleman Gamer. An avid RPG fan, Russell can also be found plotting the demise of adventurers from behind a Dungeon Master's screen. He can be heard weekly on the "Geek In Review" podcast (GiRPodcast.podomatic.com).


  1. I really, really hate to say it but isn’t his name Mark Pincus? Or is the “F” a play on the word “fink”?

  2. Fixed! I blame it on the fact that you had a “Fink”lestein reporting on a Pincus. It certainly wasn’t a Freudian slip. Not at ALL.

    • All good, just wasn’t sure if it was intentional or not. Looks like you left one last instance of it in there at the end sentence though.

  3. I SO wish the man would grab a clue. He has people working for him who are killing his games with stupid stupid decisions… tons of feedback out there and all of it being ignored.

    Zynga does not HAVE to tank – but until someone there pays attention, they certainly deserve to.

    • They acknowledge the feedback, it’s just that they act on it in such a fashion that suggests incremental and lackadaisical work habits. I get that not everything in the gaming world can be instantaneous but some stuff they could have done to a number of their games (instead of stuffing more out there) has been gathering dust for years now.

      Someone can save the company in general but it would take a lot of restructuring efforts for it to be as lucrative as it once was and honestly I doubt dipping into the gambling side of things is going to help their cause.

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