Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer temporarily takes over for departing Don Mattrick

microsoft logo steve ballmer

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer will take over the duties of soon-to-depart president of interactive entertainment business Don Mattrick, who leaves on July 8, 2013 to become Zynga’s new CEO.

“Don’s directs will report to me and will continue to drive the day-to-day business as a team, particularly focused on shipping Xbox One this holiday,” Ballmer wrote in an email to Microsoft employees that was posted to the company’s news center following Mattrick’s confirmation as Zynga’s new CEO. “Thank you, Don, for setting us on a path to completely redefine the entertainment industry. The strong leadership team at IEB and their teams are well positioned to deliver the next-generation entertainment console, as well as transformative entertainment experiences, long into the future.”

Ballmer notes that Mattrick led the Xbox team through many successes, including growing the Xbox Live user base from 6 million to 48 million, making the Xbox 360 the top-selling U.S. console for two years running, and selling 24 million Kinects. When the new CEO steps in at Zynga next week, he’ll work in tandem with company founder and former CEO Mark Pincus, who will assume the role of Chairman and Chief Product Officer.

“I joined Zynga because I believe that Mark’s pioneering vision and mission to connect the world through games is just getting started,” Mattrick said in a statement. “Zynga is a great business that has yet to realize its full potential. I’m proud to partner with Mark to deliver high-quality, fun, social games wherever people want to play.”

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