日前，社交游戏开发商CrowdStar首席执行官Niren Hiro宣布离职，原执行总裁Peter Relan接过大权，成为公司新任首席执行官。
在过去几个季度中，CrowdStar发行了基于Flash的角色扮演游戏《It Girl》和《Mighty Pirates》，除此之外，游戏邦还获知CrowdStar已经开始向日本手机游戏市场进军，并针对微软的Bing搜索平台开发游戏。Relan表示，CrowdStar在2011年还会加快在日本市场、手机游戏、Facebook平台的业务发展步伐。
CrowdStar由Suren Markosian和Jeffrey Tseng联合创办（这二者目前仍在公司任职），在2010年春季掀起了一轮招聘大潮，扩大团队规模。除了CrowdStar以外，Relan还曾通过YouWeb向OpenFeint、Sibblingz投资。该公司一年前还仅有20名成员，现已有75名员工以及一些顾问。据Relan所称，CrowdStar明年的团队规模还会扩大两倍，虽然公司现在的资金流并不成问题，但也不排除将来进行外部融资的可能。
Peter Relan takes over as CEO of social game firm CrowdStar
There’s some shuffling in the management suite at CrowdStar, a social game company with 47 million monthly active users on Facebook.
Niren Hiro is stepping down as chief executive after less than a year in the job. Executive Chairman Peter Relan (pictured right) will take over as the new CEO.
In a joint phone interview, Relan thanked Hiro and said it was an amicable parting. Relan said, “We agreed about our larger goals but not on the path to get there.We have different visions on how to scale the business and exploit the opportunities before us.”
Hiro (pictured below), a veteran of AdMob, the hot mobile-advertising startup bought last year by Google, also said he is bullish on CrowdStar’s opportunities. He point out that it has outpaced the growth of the social-game businesses of Electronic Arts (which bought Playfish for $400 million) and Disney (which bought Playdom for up to $763 million). And he noted it has managed to grow faster than those rivals without raising any outside funding. Hiro said he will continue to advise Relan and will continue to do angel investments.
CrowdStar is unique among social game companies in that it was born from YouWeb, Relan’s incubator, but has funded its own growth through its own revenues for social games such as Happy Aquarium. That has made it an underdog compared to well-financed rivals such as Zynga, which has about six times more users on Facebook.
But it has a larger audience on Facebook than many big companies. CrowdStar’s ability to stay ahead of EA and Disney is impressive, but it has only to look to Zynga to see how much more potential for growth it has.
In the past few quarters, CrowdStar launched Flash-based role-playing games It Girl and Mighty Pirates. It also began expansions into mobile markets such as Japan and started making games for Microsoft’s Bing search platform. Relan said that CrowdStar would likely pick up the pace on game introductions in 2011, with launches in Japan, mobile games, and on Facebook.
CrowdStar was founded by Suren Markosian and Jeffrey Tseng. Both remain at the company. In the spring of 2010, CrowdStar launched an ambitious hiring expansion.
Besides CrowdStar, Relan’s other investments via YouWeb include OpenFeint and Sibblingz. Hiro previously worked at AdMob and joined CrowdStar in May.
Relan said the company has 75 full-time employees and a number of consultants as well. A year ago, the company had 20 employees. Relan said it is likely that CrowdStar will double its employee count in the next year. He said the company remains cash-flow positive. But he said that it is possible that the company will consider raising outside funding in the future.
“The fact that we pulled this off without raising money is spectacular,” Relan said. “Historically, we didn’t raise money because we were scrappy and entrepreneurial. But raising money is a consideration.”
Relan said he is not looking for a permanent CEO for CrowdStar. He will likely scale back his YouWeb incubator activities in order to do the CrowdStar CEO job.（source:venturebeat）