Zynga Continues Talent Acquisitions by Placing Chips on Online Poker

Little do people know, Zynga’s first game wasn’t FarmVille. It was Zynga Poker, and that game still does exceedingly well today.

In fact, it is still the fourth most popular game on Facebook, according to AppData.com, and continues to attract nearly seven million daily users and 37 million monthly users.

Today, Zynga is acquiring the team from MarketZero, an Austin, Texas-based company that has established one of the largest online poker portals, which tracks players’ career statistics. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Zynga will not acquire the company’s main site, found at PokerTableRatings.com, but rather will be hiring the team behind the company. MarketZero’s founders include Gustavo Abdala, Amir Elaguizy, Nir Leibovich, Timothy Sullivan and Jason Wang. In all, Zynga will be hiring 16 people.

This is Zynga’s 11th acquisition in 11 months. More recently, the purchases have been less about technology and more about talent.

In March, Zynga conducted a very similar acquisition, which included hiring all six employees from Floodgate Entertainment, but did not technically acquire the Waltham, Mass.-based company.

Other recent acquisitions: XPD in Beijing, Challenge Games in Austin, Unoh Games in Tokyo, Conduit Labs in Boston, Dextrose in Frankfurt, Bonfire Studios in Dallas and Newtoy.

Latest Video

View all videos »

Search »

Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work