We describe the molecular characterization and function of vielfältig (vfl), a X-chromosomal gene that encodes a nuclear protein with six Krüppel-like C2H2 zinc finger motifs. vfl transcripts are maternally contributed and ubiquitously distributed in eggs and preblastoderm embryos, excluding the germline precursor cells. Zygotically, vfl is expressed strongly in the developing nervous system, the brain, and in other mitotically active tissues. Vfl protein shows dynamic subcellular patterns during the cell cycle. In interphase nuclei, Vfl is associated with chromatin, whereas during mitosis, Vfl separates from chromatin and becomes distributed in a granular pattern in the nucleoplasm. Functional gain-of-function and lack-of-function studies show that vfl activity is necessary for normal mitotic cell divisions. Loss of vfl activity disrupts the pattern of mitotic waves in preblastoderm embryos, elicits asynchronous DNA replication, and causes improper chromosome segregation during mitosis.