In a surprise announcement this week, Xbox’s main man Don Mattrick has announced his departure from Microsoft as he takes a position at social entertainment company Zynga.
Mattrick has lead Microsoft’s interactive entertainment division since 2007, acting as the chief representative for the Xbox’s development and business dealings. Since 2007, the Xbox has seen a huge increase in popularity, largely in part to Mattrick’s work.
Now Mattrick will be moving on to become the new CEO of Zynga, an entertainment company that maintains a focus on social and mobile gaming. The company grew to popularity with their hit Facebook game, FarmVille, and has since released titles such as CityVille, Mafia Wars, and Zynga Poker. Mattrick had the following to say about his new position:
I joined Zynga because I believe that Mark’s pioneering vision and mission to connect the world through games is just getting started. As Mark was recruiting me to come here, I was impressed by his creativity, drive and the clarity in which he sees the future of games and entertainment as a core consumer experience.
For the last 30 years, I’ve been fortunate to work with smart people on exciting projects. I’ve managed over 100 platform transitions and I’ve never lost my love for seeing products as creative experiences that bring people together…
Zynga is a great business that has yet to realize its full potential. I’m really proud to partner with a product focused founder like Mark and work with the executive team to grow the DNA of the company and lead this transition.
Mattrick will reportedly be receiving a compensation package of cash and various stocks worth over $50 Million.
With the overwhelming negative response to the recent Xbox One reveal, and Microsoft’s meager attempts to reverse their policies, many are speculating that Mattrick’s decision to leave the company he brought to success as a sign of trouble ahead. As of the most recent pre-order report, PlayStation 4 is beating Xbox One in pre-order sales by over 30,000 units.
What do you think, ScienceFiction.com readers? Is Mattrick’s absence a sign of hard times for Microsoft?