Home » Meta stock plummets after Zuckerberg touts money-losing projects

Meta stock plummets after Zuckerberg touts money-losing projects

by NBC News

Mark Zuckerberg started Meta’s earnings call Wednesday by talking about artificial intelligence. Then he moved onto the metaverse, touting his company’s headsets, glasses and operating system. He spent almost the entirety of his opening remarks focused on the many ways Meta loses money.

Investors weren’t into it. Meta shares tumbled as much as 19% in extended trading on Wednesday, wiping out more than $200 billion in market cap. The drop came despite Meta reporting better-than-expected profit and revenue for the first quarter. Shares opened more than 14% lower Thursday.

Zuckerberg appeared ready for the sell-off.

“I think it’s worth calling that out, that we’ve historically seen a lot of volatility in our stock during this phase of our product playbook where we’re investing in scaling a new product but aren’t yet monetizing it,” Zuckerberg said Wednesday. He cited past efforts like short-video service Reels, Stories and the transition to mobile.

Meta generates 98% of its revenue from digital advertising. But to the extent Zuckerberg talked about ads, he was looking to the future and the ways the company could potentially turn its current investments into ad dollars. In discussing Meta’s effort to build a “leading AI,” he said, “There are several ways to build a massive business here including scaling business messaging, introducing ads or paid content into AI interactions.”

He spent time talking about Meta Llama 3, the company’s newest large language model, and the recent rollout of Meta AI, the company’s answer to OpenAI’s ChatGPT. 

Zuckerberg then moved onto potential opportunities for expansion within the mixed reality headset market, like a headset for work or fitness. Meta opened up access to the operating system that powers its Quest headsets on Monday, which Zuckerberg said will help the mixed reality ecosystem grow faster.

He also talked up Meta’s AR glasses, which he called “the ideal device for an AI assistant…

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