Zynga Hires MarketZero Team

San Francisco social game maker Zynga announced in a blog post today that it has hired the entire 16-member team at Austin, TX-based MarketZero, including founders Gustavo Abdala, Amir Elaguizy, Nir Leibovich, Timothy Sullivan, and Jason Wang. MarketZero is the creator of a popular online poker portal called PokerTableRatings, which Zynga is not acquiring. Rather, the company said it plans to put the Market Zero team to work improving Zynga Poker, which was the company’s first online game. “The team’s experience and deep knowledge of the online poker industry will be invaluable as we work together to build out cutting-edge features and further enhance Zynga Poker,” the company said. Terms of the deal were not disclosed; it’s Zynga’s second big expansion in Austin (the company acquired Challenge Games in June 2010).

Wade Roush is a freelance science and technology journalist and the producer and host of the podcast Soonish. Follow @soonishpodcast

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