Hugh de Loayza, vice president of business development for Zynga, is extremely bullish on the social gaming business -- which is shaping up to be the posterchild for industry growth in 2009. Zynga, of course, operates many of the most popular games on Facebook -- including FarmVille, Café World, and Mafia Wars -- the top three titles, as of this writing, for monthly active users.
This interview took place at last month's GDC China in Shanghai shortly after the launch of Café World. In his presentation, de Loayza revealed that the title is Zynga's fastest growing game yet -- it reached 3 million users in just six days. As of this writing, it has over 28 million monthly active users.
De Loayza's background, of course, is not in social gaming, but in casual games -- with stints at EA's Pogo and Sony Online Entertainment -- so he understands the industry's transition.