Zynga officially launches Studio, plans to double headcount

Zynga officially launches Studio, plans to double headcount

Bangalore: US-based social game developer Zynga on Thursday announced the official launch of Zynga Studio-I here and said it planned to double its current head count of 100 during 2011.

The Bangalore studio, which is the largest Zynga Studio outside the US, will focus on innovative game development to create new features, said Zynga country manager Shan Kadavil told reporters here.

It will also be engaged in full life-cycle game development, as other existing studios, he said.

“With the launch of Studio-I, we are expanding our capabilities to leverage the amount of creative talent based in India for new features within Zynga’s popular games," he said.

“India is an exciting market for us. We are investing in engineering talent, creative talent and senior management," he said refusing to divulge the financial quantum.

Zynga will recruit engineers, product managers, game designers, artists and senior management to strategically grow operations, he said.

The San Francisco-headquartered game developer, which has more than 250 million monthly active users playing their popular games such as Farm Ville and Mafia Wars, some of which were available on social network platforms like Facebook, said in India it had 1.5 million active players.

On its plans of making the games available on various devices, he said: “Our vision is to connect the world and not just connect the world on the PC, we want our games to be ubiquitious across all platforms."

On the India market, he said: “The company is serious about India," adding it was lucky to have found the talent to grow the infrastructure here. The company had launched an open source data base co-founded from India.

“We have been fortunate to have the Bollywood in India, it has been been great talent source," he said, adding the company had hired a creative director from Bollywood who is driving the growth from the creative side for the company.

He said currently it had no plans to develop new games for India. Zynga’s strategy was to have a global landscape with regional enhanced features. “This strategy has worked very well for us," he said.

A Zynga official said the greatest challenge in India was to find experienced game designers.

The gaming industry being very nascent in India, there were not many well experienced game designers, equipped with specialised game designing skills, though India offered plenty of engineering and creative talent pool.

However, the company was optimistic that with the industry’s growth, talent would flow.