Shares in Meta Platforms on Monday soared in pre-market U.S. trading after the social media giant announced a new paid subscription service on its Facebook and Instagram platforms.
Meta Platforms Inc. is set out for its biggest single-day gain in nearly a decade after Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg laid out plans to make the technology conglomerate leaner, more effective, and more pivotal.
The social media giant on Monday announced a new paid subscription service on its Facebook and Instagram platforms.
Zuckerberg, who has spent the previous year promising a faraway future in a digital world called the metaverse, was more riveted on a call with investors Wednesday on immediate complications, such as sending users the most appropriate videos at the right time and finally making substantial revenue from messaging products. He described 2023 the ‘‘Year of Efficiency.’’
The company is working on flattening its organization structure and removing some layers of middle management to make decisions faster, as well as deploying AI tools to help their engineers be more productive, Zuckerberg said on the call.
Meta, on the rebound after the worst year for its stock in history, stands in stark disparity to other tech companies that have noticed their stocks reprimanded for disappointing outlooks. Snapchat owner Snap Inc., for instance, plunged 10% after projecting its first-ever quarterly revenue plunge. The industry has confronted a decrease in advertiser demand – as well as a shift in privacy rules on Apple Inc.’s iPhone that makes it harder to offer targeted ads. But Meta has countered the slump with measures including a cut of 11,000 jobs, or 13%of the workforce, in November in its first-ever major layoff.
The company’s stock surge is the biggest contributor to the Nasdaq 100’s rally Thursday, including more than 10 percent to the target rise, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The tech-heavy gauge is inching closer to entering a bull market as investors pile into growth stocks, wagering that the Federal Reserve’s rate hike is nearing an end.
Meta shares on Monday soared 24% to $189.54 at 10:41 a.m. in New York.
Fourth-quarter sales plummeted 4% to $32.2 billion, the third straight period of declines. Even so, the overall beat analysts’ estimates, and Meta projected revenue of $26 billion to $28.5 billion for the first quarter, in line with an average projection of $27.3 billion. Analysts are forecasting that Meta will return to growth following the present period.
In the call with investors on Wednesday, Zuckerberg said the company is using AI to improve the way it suggests content – a strategy for making the platform more attractive to advertisers and users alike. Digital ads make up most of its sales, specifically from clients in the technology and finance domain. And, although ad sales have slumped, the company also directed to some industries, including health and travel, where businesses are consuming more.
Snap gave a smaller amount of upbeat outlook on Tuesday, saying it expected sales to decline in the current period. CEO Evan Spiegel said the ad slump appears to be undermining out. ‘Advertising demand hasn’t really improved, but it hasn’t gotten significantly worse either,’ Spiegel said on a conference call.
Meta’s job cutbacks came during a quarter that was otherwise an advancement for the tech giant. Facebook, Meta’s flagship social network, now has more than 2 billion daily users, up more than 70 million from the previous year.
The company also enhanced its stock-buyback authorization by $40 billion, adding to the $10.9 billion remaining from previous repurchase programs. In the fourth quarter, Meta noted restructuring charges of $4.2 billion associated with its job cutbacks.
Zuckerberg has devoted tens of billions of dollars to an effort to build the metaverse – a digital world where people can work and play. Those efforts are still in their initial phases, which means much of the capital spending is not leading to immediate revenues.
Still, Menlo Park, California-based company said 2023 expenses will be $89 billion to $95 billion – less than Meta’s previous estimation. That might assist enhance investor fears that the company is squandering its virtual-reality ambitions.
Capital expenditure in the latest quarter surged to $9.22 billion. In 2021 the fourth quarter, by contrast, capital expenditure was $5.54 billion.