Snap wants to transform itself and is not for sale, chief executive says

The social media company is restructuring and laid off 20 per cent of its workers last week

Snapchat founder and chief executive Evan Spiegel. AFP
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Snap chief executive Evan Spiegel said he is set on transforming his social media company — not selling it — after a tumultuous year in which the stock has plummeted 76 per cent.

“So far, Bobby [Murphy] and I believe that the best way to realise our potential is by building an independent company,” Mr Spiegel said at Vox Media’s Code Conference on Wednesday, when asked about whether he would consider selling Snap, owner of the photo-sharing and messaging app Snapchat.

Mr Spiegel and Mr Murphy, Snap’s co-founder and technology chief, hold more than 99.5 per cent of voting rights.

Snap is in the throes of a restructuring that includes a shift of its priorities. Last week, the company said it laid off 20 per cent of its workers, cancelled or scaled back a number of projects, lost its chief business officer to Netflix and reorganised the advertising sales department.

The chief executive's goal is to narrow the focus of the business to expanding its community, improving the advertising business and developing its augmented reality offerings.

“When I look at the long-term opportunity for the business, I really believe it is enormous,” Mr Spiegel said.

“We are far from reaching our potential. We have really got to focus on executing.”

He specifically mentioned improving Snap’s direct-response advertising business, a key tool for marketers to reach customers with high purchasing intent.

Marketers have spent less on the platform this year, dragging down revenue growth to the lowest levels since the company went public in 2017.

Updated: September 08, 2022, 6:52 AM
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