The turn of mark zuckerberg towards the metaverse has cost him dearly In the real world.
Even in a difficult year for nearly all of America’s tech titans, the lost wealth of the CEO of Meta Platforms Inc. stands out. Mark Zuckerberg’s fortune has been cut in half and something else, falling by 71 billion dollars so far this year, the most among the ultra-rich tracked by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
With 55.9 billion dollars, his net worth ranks 20th among global billionaireshis lowest since 2014 and behind three Waltons and two members of the Koch family.
Why did Mark Zuckerberg’s fortune fall?
It was less than two years ago mark zuckerberg38 years old, was worth 106 billion dollars and he was among an elite group of global billionaires, with only Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates commanding larger fortunes. His wealth rose to a peak of $142 billion in September 2021when the company’s shares reached $382.
The next month, Zuckerberg introduced Meta and changed the company name from Facebook Inc. It’s been largely downhill from there as it struggles to find its place in the tech universe.
His recent earnings reports have been dismal. He started in February, when the company did not disclose any growth in the number of monthly Facebook userscausing a historic collapse in its share price and cut Zuckerberg’s fortune by 31 billion dollarsone of the biggest drops in one day in history.
Other issues include Instagram’s bet on Reelsits answer to TikTok’s short-form video platform, even though it’s worth less in ad revenue, while the broader industry has been hit by lower marketing spending due to concerns about an economic slowdown.
Shares are also dragged down by the company’s investments in the metaverse, said Laura Martin, senior internet analyst at Needham & Co. Mark Zuckerberg has said he expects the project to lose “significant” amounts of money in the next three to five years.
In the meantime, Meta “you have to get these TikTok users back”Martin said. He too is hampered by “excessive regulatory scrutiny and intervention,” he said.
To Goalbased in Menlo Park, California, is doing worse in 2022 than most of its peers of FAANG. It’s down 57 percent this yearfar more than the 14 percent declines for Apple Inc., 26 percent for Amazon.com Inc. and 29 percent for Google parent Alphabet Inc. Meta is even closing the gap on 2022 losses with Netflix Inc., which is down 60 percent.
If it weren’t for its push into virtual reality, the social media giant “would be more in line with where Alphabet is at,” said Mandeep Singh, a technology analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence. Meta could get around this problem by spinning off some of its other businesses, like WhatsApp or Instagram, he said.
almost all Zuckerberg’s wealth is tied to the actions of Meta. He owns more than 350 million shares, according to the company’s latest proxy statement. The price was little changed to 146.18 at 12:22 pm in New York on Monday, September 19.
Mark Zuckerberg has attempted a kind of rebranding. He recently uploaded a video of himself practicing mixed martial arts and repeatedly referred to himself as a “product designer” in a three-hour conversation on the Joe Rogan podcast.