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Zynga Sacks 364 Employees

The social gaming company cuts costs by cutting staff.

Posted on May 6, 2015, at 6:22 p.m. ET

Paul Sakuma / AP

Less than a month after reclaiming the top job at Zynga, founder Mark Pincus laid out his plans for restructuring the social gaming company. First order of business: layoffs.

Reporting better-than-expected first-quarter earnings Wednesday, Zynga said it will eliminate about 18% of its global workforce. As a result, some 364 employees will lose their jobs, saving the company an estimated $100 million.

When he retook the reigns of the company he founded, Pincus promised to return the now "mobile-first" Zynga to its social-gaming roots. Today, he argued that this restructuring is a first step toward that goal, narrowing the company's focus to a handful of mobile gaming categories.

"We're doing this because we want to be in position so the company can play offense when we launch a great game," Pincus said in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle. "The focus is in making this a strong company for the future and making this a place where people can take risks and be creative and try new things. In order to get there, we need to drive a culture of being resourceful."

Zynga's stock, which is down about 1.9% this year, rose nearly 6% in after-hours trading on the news.

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