Zynga recorded a record share price hike in more than a year with a whopping 15% climb at the close of trading on Thursday to close at over $3.53. This remarkable achievement has significant ramifications for the online gambling world. It has been a roller coaster ride for the social gaming giant who boast over 300 million users.

The latest positive news could make CEO Mark Pincus the ultimate comeback kid. He has delivered on his promises to enter the real money gambling arena with their launch of “ZyngaPlusPoker” and ZyngaPlusCasino” on Wednesday for UK players. Once again the UK has been chosen as it is one of the most regulated and established global markets for online gambling. There are estimates by research companies like H2 Gambling Capital who estimate that revenues in the U.S. alone will reach over 47.4 billion in online gambling alone.

This latest share price hike could be the tip of the iceberg for Zynga as they are banking on online gambling becoming legal nationwide in the U.S. and not only in limited states like Nevada and Delaware.

After Zynga and Facebook recent moves to rely less on each other’s support, real money gambling is seen as an “all or nothing” marketing strategy to bail themselves out of falling revenues and stiff competition. With startup Betable it has become easier for Zynga’s competitors’ to also get a piece of the pie when they convert their social games to the real money option.

Many believe that the new gold rush in online gambling is that of converting social casino games to the real-money option. While Zynga was once the undisputed leader of the pack, they will have to work harder and smarter if they intend on regaining their status as the global leader in the social gaming.

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