Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg saw $29billion wiped from his net worth when his company’s share price collapsed following its latest quarterly report.
Shares of Meta dropped nearly 25per cent in after-hours trading after the company announced lower-than-expected revenue figures, as well as a decline in Facebook users for the first time in its 18-year history.
The number of daily active Facebook users fell by 1 million to 1.929 billion, with the company blaming competition from rivals like TikTok and YouTube.
“The teams are executing quite well and the product is growing very quickly,” Zuckerberg said.
“The thing that is somewhat unique here is that TikTok is so big a competitor already and also continues to grow at quite a fast rate.”
The poor performance saw the company’s stock market value fall by roughly $200 billion, leading to a drop in Zuckerberg’s fortune, which is mostly tied up in Meta stock.
Zuckerberg is ranked as the world’s seventh richest person, according to the Bloomberg Billionaire’s Index, with his net worth before the share price collapse estimated at $121 billion.
Zuckerberg said he was confident that the company’s new focus on the metaverse would prove a massive opportunity for new streams of revenue and growth, though some are skeptical about the promise of virtual worlds.
Technologist Elon Musk, who tops the list of the world’s richest people, recently expressed doubts about the metaverse, claiming that it was a fringe technology that lacked the appeal of traditional social media.
“I don’t know if I necessarily buy into this metaverse stuff, although people talk to me a lot about it,” he said in an interview with conservative satire site The Babylon Bee. “I don’t see someone strapping a friggin’ screen to their face all day.”