John Schappert, chief operating officer of Electronic Arts, has left the videogames goliath to join the buzzy social gaming startup Zynga.
EA announced the departure in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, The Wall Street Journal is reporting. Zynga, the publisher of wildly popular titles FarmVille and CityVille, has declined to comment.
The high-profile move is the latest in a series of signals that casual and social gaming has come of age. Pop star Lady Gaga is reportedly in discussions with the company about a partnership to promote the singer's upcoming album to Zynga's sprawling community of gamers.
Schappert joined EA in June 2009 as COO, after serving as a corporate vice president atCorp., where he managed portions of its videogame business.