Zynga has made its first major executive appointment in several months: Dave Wehner, formerly a managing director at the investment bank Allen and Company, has taken over the role of chief financial executive, while Mark Vranesh has moved on to become chief accountant.
That the new hire is significant on some level is clear. Wehner will bring a wealth of knowledge and connections, and he could not have come cheap. But what will he be doing? Maybe he was was brought in for an IPO, or maybe more acquisitions — at least according to speculation from TechCrunch and VentureBeat.
Wehner could also serve as an all-around dealmaker. Allen and Co’s investors are known for their deep connections, going far beyond tech to movie companies, high-level investors and major brands.
But there are likely already ties between Zynga CEO Mark Pincus and Allen and Co. At the bank’s annual power broker conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, the NY Post reported that Pincus was the star of the show this year. And Zynga has had no trouble attracting attention from big brands.
At the end of the day, it’s not unusual for a high-profile company like Zynga to put an experienced banker in charge of the CFO role, so any further speculation is simply that. Zynga is also very new to the world’s biggest investors, and the country is still coming out of a recession; and, most importantly, the company is well financed through its previous deals.