Zynga's Boss Near Tears, Says Wall Street Journal, as He Grapples With Turning the Company AroundS

Well, now you've done it. Yes you, Facebook user, you've made Mark Pincus cry.

Taken public and valued at $9 billion in so doing, Zynga's stock price has slid to a quarter of its value at the initial public offering, and taught a harsh lesson to the CEO about what happens when you run a company that gets graded every day in the form of its share price.

The Wall Street Journal reports that "tears nearly welled up" in the eyes of Pincus, Zynga's chief, during a tough-love meeting in September with Bill Campbell, a director on Apple's board, called in by a venture capital firm to advise Pincus on his company's direction.

Zynga's missteps in mobile games development appear to be a sore spot with investors, particularly. The company paid $183 million for Draw Something shortly after that game's release and has seen it steadily lose players ever since, much like its main Facebook games offerings, which have been hurt by changes Facebook has since made in how games are searched and displayed.

"Mark's challenge is how to make great games when his assets-his developers-are literally walking out the door," said one analyst, noting the bottomed-out morale that has Pincus so upset.

Behind Mark Pincus's Bid to Save Zynga [Wall Street Journal (subscription required)]