Maytal Olsha Returns to Zynga after the Firm Acquired Rising Tide Games

Zynga has acquired Social Casino start up, Rising Tide Games, which specializes in social casino games. The move to acquire the free to play casino games maker is a bid by Zynga to increase its presence in the social casino segment. Maytal Olsha, a former executive at Zynga together with Stuart Zoble, Andrew Sega, and Peter Franco established rising Tide Games.

Zynga’s CEO, Mark Pincus, pointed out that the team at Zynga was extremely excited to welcome on board the talented individuals behind Rising Tide Games. On her part, Olsha noted that she was happy to combine forces with Zynga and its entire team. This is because it is a place she knows well especially its studios in Texas where she intends to continue creating original free to play games. Rising Tide Games has offices in Austin, Texas and New York.
Initially, Olsha worked at Zynga for a period of two years. First, she served as the chief operating officer in charge of new markets that included social slots. She proved very successful, as she was able to enhance the company’s reputation thus expanding its consumer base. This was before being hired to move the company into real money gambling. The process was not quick enough as expected by the company because of the legalization process.

Due to slowness, the company had to change its strategy. Zynga decided to focus on social casino games based on virtual goods after pulling out of entering the real money gambling. The company started offering games like Hit it Rich Casino Slots and Zynga Poker. The shift also resulted in the change of role for Olsha. She was charged with the responsibility of handling the social slots business that included Duck Dynasty Slots and Hit Rich Casino Slots.

Mark Pincus’ move of bringing back former executives shows that he has a more different approach compared to his predecessor. Many of the employees left during the tenure of the former CEO Mattrick. Mark Pincus, who is the founder of the company, stepped in as CEO when Mattrick left. Mark has shown much belief in his employees. To this end, he is taking back the former team to continue with Zynga’s strategy of growth within the Social casino games set up.

Stuart Zoble, a founder and co Chief Executive Officer of Rising Tide Games noted that the partnership was a good. Stuart asserted that the partnership was excellent because Zynga is a development team driven by data. It also has commitment to quality data in generating best experiences for players. The partnership is more of an added advantage because both sides complement each other by having similar objectives. The two companies’ main aim is to provide the users with the best experience. It is crucial to note that the expectations from the two companies are that the partnership focuses on data science, which is based on high quality game designs that are centered on the player. The result of the successful partnership will be the creation of a rewarding and most engaging slot games that are free to play. The games will be delivered and made available in a number of devices and platforms.

Prior to establishing Rising Tide Games, Zoble worked at High 5 Games as a producer of casino games. He served as the senior vice president. During his tenure, Zoble led in the development of several real money gambling games that are currently being played in casinos across the world. Sega, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Rising Tide Games, has more than 15 years of experience in the gaming world. Previously, he worked at Sojo Studios where he managed the creation of social casino games. Both Zoble and Sega are veterans having great knowledge in the gaming industry and will be of great value to Zynga.

According to Zynga, the company’s Black Diamond Casino is expected to be launched worldwide any time from now. This is because it is only available in the United States app stores. The game is developed in a way that puts emphasis on high-end graphics with iconic brands of pop culture like Grease. It also consists of attractive programs for VIP players. It is backed by scientific data geared towards creating a personalized and unique user experience. Rising Tide Games investors include Entrée Capital and Raine Ventures with a board of directors like of Gordon Rubenstein. Mark did not disclose the value at which Zynga acquired the company.

Presently, Zynga is a big business in social casino slots ever since it acquired Spooky Cool Labs in 2013. The acquisition of Rising Tide Games will cement its place as a leader in social free to play casino games. It also increased its social slots brand bookings by 274 and this increase was registered between 2014 and 2015. The target market for the social casino game is estimated to hit $3.5 million by the end of this year. The consumer base is projected to grow by around 16% to reach $4 billion in 2016.

Zynga has also experienced greater growth since moving away from real money gambling as its social casino titles have been registering impressive growth of 47% each year. This growth has been brought about by the change of strategy adopted by the company. By acquiring Rising Tide Games, the bottom line of the organization will increase. Currently, Zynga ranks as one of the leading game developers in the world. It has over 232 million users that actively play its games including Zynga Poker, which is still the world’s biggest free and original social poker game. The users of the games can enjoy Mafia Wars, Café World, Treasure Isle and Farm Ville. In addition, one can also enjoy Words With Friends and many more games that the company offers.

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