Mark Pincus, a frenetic visionary and much loved internet entrepreneur of the current age, best known as the CEO and co-founder of Zynga an online social gaming developer.
Pincus was born in the US, Chicago in 1963 he was raised by his Jewish parents, Donna and Theodore Pincus. His parents were able and educated and unlike many other successful people who come from poor families, Mark Pincus was born in sustainable and nurturing family environment.
His mother worked as a professional architect while his father worked as a business columnist and public relations adviser to CEOs and politicians. Pincus may well have picked up from an early age some good business management skills and principles from his father.
He attended Francis W. Parker School in his early childhood, and graduated in 1984. Pincus also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
While at the Harvard University, Pincus together with Sherry Coutu established the communication club.
His journey to success was varied. Mark Pincus spend six years working in venture capital and providing financial services to firms. After graduating from Wharton, he worked with Lazard Freres & Co. for two years. Pincus would later relocate to Hong Kong where he worked with Asian Capital Partners as a vice president for two years.
After his stint in Hong Kong he decided to pursue education again going back to the U.S and enrolling on an MBA degree at Harvard University from where he graduated in 1993.
During his time at Harvard University, Pincus engaged with various people serving as a contemporary of Guy Spier, Chris Hohn, and Chris Shumway. Moreover, he also served as an intern at Brain & Co. during this period. However, the after graduating, Brain & Co. did not extend fulltime employment to him, which prompted his move to Tele-communication Inc., now AT & T cables as a manager.
His tenure at Tele-communication Inc. was short-lived, and after one year Pincus moved to Columbia Capital where served as a vice president. His time with Columbia Capital enabled him to launch software startups and provide investment into new media businesses, in Washington D.C.
The beginning of Pincus’s journey into entrepreneurship began with the creation of Freeloader Inc in 1995. It didn’t take long before this firm was acquired by Individual Inc, in just a period of seven months. Pincus sold Freeloader Inc for $38 million, stamping him as a truly successful entrepreneur.
After selling off his first firm, Mark Pincus continued his journey forming another firm, in 1997 he had created his second organization, “support.com.” Unlike Freeloader Inc, Pincus retained ownership of his new firm in which he served as both the manager and the CEO making it one of the leading support automation software and service providers in the U.S.
In 2000, support.com went public and changed its name to Supportsoft, Inc.
At the age of 37 He launched his third startup firm, Tribe.Net, an early social network which was formed in 2003. With support from Guy Spier, it partnered with major local newspapers, media firms and Mayfield Fund.
Tribe.net earned Pincus a name in the local market. He was steadfastly turning into an icon in the American entrepreneurial society. However, in 2007, he sold key assets of the firm to Cisco Systems. In the same, he collaborated with Reid Hoffman and bought the six-degrees patent for $700, 000.
However, it is important to know that Mark Pincus is among the founding investors of Facebook, Twitter, Napster, and Friendster.
After selling the major assets of Tribe.net, Pincus formed his fourth startup firm, Zynga in July 2007 in where he worked as the CEO up to July 2013.
Zynga is known for developing great games that are played on social media. Some of the famous games from Zynga are, city ville 2, bubble safari, farm ville, scramble with friends, and words with friends. In 2009, he came up with Zynga.org, a firm he argued that was formed to change the face of the world with virtual social goods.
Awards, success, and net worth – up to date, the net worth of Mark Pincus is estimated to be around $ 1.5 billion. He also takes pride in being awarded the best CEO in 2013.
He also owns a great deal of real estate and properties around the United States. Many of these investments are in the capital Washington D.C and San Francisco.
His own three-bedroom home built in San Francisco is valued at $ 20 million. He also co-owned a private jet. Currently, he lives in Francisco with his wife Ali and their daughter.
His strong academic background and early life work experience certainly helped build his business acumen. The experience he had gathered over six years working with different people and firms also helped in preparing him for a top management position.
Moreover, his wife might also have played a role in encouraging his development as an entrepreneur herself. However, Pincus was also determined and hardworking, a spirit that helped him developed as a business manager and entrepreneur.
Pincus stepped down as the CEO of Zynga.org in 2013 to pave way for Dom Mattrik, as the new CEO of the firm. In April 2014, the organization announced that the move was to allow entrepreneur Mark Pincus to concentrate on his new role as the chairman of the firm’s board. Like him, his wife is also an entrepreneur and a founder web based business, One Kings Lane that deals in sales of household accessories and furniture.
Pincus resignation from his managerial role of Zynga has enabled him to take active participation in his newly formed incubator business superlabs together with other great entrepreneurs such as Ian Cinnamon and Isabella Tromba.
The future looks bright for Pincus who is now reinvesting in upcoming talent, check out superlabs here.