Tech Job Watch Apr 07 2011

Zynga Taps Cisco Executive as Chief Information Officer

By nick wingfield

Zynga Inc. has hired Debra Chrapaty from Cisco Systems Inc. to be its chief information officer, as hot Web start-ups continue to poach talent from more established technology companies.

Chrapaty, who was senior vice president of Cisco's collaboration software group, is a veteran executive of Microsoft Corp. and E-Trade Group Inc., now known as E*TRADE Financial Corp. Cadir Lee, chief technology officer of San Francisco-based Zynga, said Chrapaty's "experience with both rapidly growing companies as well as running some of the largest networks in the world will prove invaluable as Zynga continues to grow and develop games that delight our hundreds of millions of players."

The move is a further sign of the allure a handful of the most promising Internet startups, including Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc. and Groupon Inc., have for seasoned executives at bigger companies, including Microsoft, Google Inc. and others. Zynga is widely regarded as a likely prospect for an initial public offering within the coming years. The company, which operates the hugely popular FarmVille and CityVille games on Facebook, was recently valued at approximately $10 billion in a private fundraising round, according to people familiar with the matter.

Today, Zynga also brought on Taylor Baruda, Yahoo's head of M&A, in an unspecified role, reports AllThingsD.

Zynga also recently hired Neil Roseman, a longtime Inc. executive, as its vice president of engineering. Last year, the company hired its senior vice president of mobile David Ko from Yahoo Inc.

Cisco, which Chrapaty joined in 2009, has struggled of late. Earlier this week, Cisco Chief Executive John Chambers said in a company memo that the company had lost its focus, was slow to make decisions and had executed poorly.

Nick Wingfield is a reporter for The Wall Street Journal. Write to him here.

This story originally appeared on

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