Farmville creator to hire Jeff Karp following its John Schappert swoop

EA casual boss ‘quits for Zynga’

Jeff Karp, an executive at the centre of EA’s social games output, is in the process of leaving the company to join Zynga, Develop understands.

A US source, who engages with EA at senior levels, said Karp has signalled his intention to leave and will imminently join the San Francisco based Farmville creator.

Karp’s eleven year spell at Electronic Arts has come to a end as part of the publisher’s senior management shuffle, with the likes of Peter Moore, Andrew Wilson and Frank Gibeau each being promoted to more senior roles.

But the departure of Karp will add to a growing list of directors and executives who recently quit the publisher, the most striking being its former second-in-command John Schappert, who now also works for Zynga.

NBA Jam co-creator Mark Turmell left in July, Madden producer Phil Frazier quit in June, an unnamed EA Tiburon boss left in April, while EA Easy Studio boss Ben Cousins resigned in March – one day after Visceral Games boss Scot Amos departed.

During this period, EA spokespeople have collectively declined to comment on the matter following various requests from Develop.

Develop has asked EA to comment on Karp’s departure. No response has been issued at the time of going to press.

Karp was appointed executive vice president of EA’s Play Label six months ago, following a two-year spell as chief revenue officer.

He began work at the publisher, as a marketing executive, in 2000.

EA Play recently revealed The Sims Social, the firm’s newest challenger to Zynga’s fleet of successful Facebook games.

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