Zynga to launch online gambling initiative in 2013

Zynga will launch a UK gambling initiative in partnership with bwin.party Digital Entertainment as a first step into the online gambling world, reports Gamasutra.

bwin.party is an online gaming company that does business in poker, sports betting, casinos and bingo. Zynga's first partnered launch will be a slots simulator based on FarmVille. According to the company's chief financial officer David Wehner, this is only the first of many gambling ventures.

"We view this as a first step into real money gambling, and we believe that it's a good first step," Wehner said. "But it's only a first step toward what we think is a large opportunity for Zynga."

The announcement comes in the wake of massive layoffs, studio closures and cancellations on Oct. 23, after CEO Mark Pincus announced cost-reducing cuts affecting roughly five percent of Zynga's employees.

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