Facebook on hunt for game deal maker

Facebook on hunt for game deal maker

By Rob Crossley

August 9th 2010 at 5:42PM

Social networking empire set to bolster its games business

Facebook is racing to find a star games industry exec that will broker deals with publishers and development studios.

The social networking giant – which recently clocked over 500 million individual active users – wants to make major deals with external studios and publishers, in a bid to bolster the platform’s games offering.

The move comes in the wake of mounting speculation that Google is splashing cash in a big bid to become Facebook’s hottest rival in the online social games space.

“Facebook is seeking a leader for our Strategic Partner Development team to develop and enhance successful partnerships and influence internal and external partners and industry stakeholders in the Gaming industry,” read the firm’s job posting.

The company added that its new exec will need at least ten years in the industry, and will build and manage a high performance team – a telling clue that Facebook is looking to make its own games on the lucrative platform.

“This job requires high levels of creativity and strategic thinking, as you’ll be called upon to help both large, incumbent gaming companies as well as venture-backed gaming start-ups develop innovative social gaming experiences building on Facebook Platform,” read the vacancy posting.

Facebook gaming has become an extraordinarily lucrative phenomenon; the driving force behind the success of companies such as Zynga.

Yet the company has in recent times seen its relationship with developers come under pressure.

This year it placed a ban on viral notifications in Facebook news feeds – once a key proponent in the success of social games studios. It has also made developers use official Facebook Credits in game monetisation models, which Facebook takes a thirty per cent cut.

Google is thought will soon strike a deal with Zynga as it prepares to launch a new games division. As part of that plan, according to numerous internet reports, Google has bought social games developer Slide in a $182m deal.