Mark Zuckerberg was all-in on the metaverse last year, willing to spend whatever it took to dominate virtual reality.
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The results appear to be paying off. Mr Zuckerberg’s fortune, which is comprised largely of his Meta stake, has grown by $44.3 billion this year, the most of anyone tracked by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Even with Meta shares closing down slightly on Friday in New York, Mr Zuckerberg’s efficiency pivot has made the stock the second-best performer this year on the S&P 500, soaring more than 100 per cent and pushing his net worth to $89.9 billion.
Mr Zuckerberg is now the 12th-richest person in the world, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
On Friday, Meta’s Instagram platform was reported to be planning to launch a competitor to Twitter as early as next month. The text-based app is currently being tested with celebrities and influencers, sources said.
Meta has a better chance to take share from Twitter than smaller peers, Bloomberg Intelligence analysts Mandeep Singh and Damian Reimertz said.
“Meta could be challenged to bring Twitter users to its platform,” they said in a note, yet it “may be a threat to Twitter, whose engagement has likely been hurt by charging its heavy users a monthly subscription fee”.
Meta’s revenue outlook is also brightening, Loop Capital Markets analysts Rob Sanderson and Alan Gould wrote in a note on May 15. The analysts have a target of $320 a share, compared with Friday’s closing price of $245.64.
“We think Meta’s product story is as good as it’s been in some time,” they said.