Zynga beats estimates, but user base continues to crumble

The Farmville creator's loss narrows as it names a new COO. But its rough ride isn't over.

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Social-gaming company Zynga on Thursday released its third-quarter earnings, and while its revenue decline still beats Wall Street's estimates, the user numbers don't spell recovery.

Zynga, now headed up by former Xbox chief Don Mattrick after Mark Pincus stepped down in July, came in at a loss of 2 cents per share on adjusted revenue of $152 million, up from Wall Street estimates of a loss of 4 cents per share on $142.7 million.

"We believe our top franchises, Zynga Poker, FarmVille, and Words With Friends can be evergreen in terms of consumer interest and we are focused on growing these franchises in fiscal year 2014," Mattrick said in a statement. "I am confident that Zynga is rewiring itself in a meaningful way that will strengthen the core of our business and put us back on track to achieve significant long-term growth and profits."

Despite that, the number of monthly active users is down 57 percent from last year to 133 million. Daily active users have been halved, to 30 million from 60 million in the third quarter of 2012.

Zynga coincided the earnings report with the announcement that it has hired Clive Downie as its chief operating officer. Downie, who spent 15 years at Electronic Arts, comes from mobile games company DeNa West.

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