December 6, 2012

Facebook: Big and getting bigger?

The company wants to reach every single person on the Internet on the planet.

By Jessica Guynn, Los Angeles Times

(Continued from page 1)

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An Emirati man leaves a news conference announcing Facebook’s opening of its first Middle East and North Africa office at the Armani hotel in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Wednesday.

The Associated Press

Zuckerberg has said he would like to find a way to enter China, but even with the recent leadership change there -- ushering in the Chinese Communist Party's first new chief in the social media era -- most analysts say it's unlikely.

Many investors are far more interested in how Facebook plans to cash in on the users it already has than how it plans to sign up more of them, especially in poorer parts of the world where it will be much harder for Facebook to make money.

"Does getting to 2 billion users matter? The answer is no," Pivotal Research analyst Brian Wieser said.

Gleit says growth isn't just a numbers game. Her team focuses on building products that encourage users to be more active on Facebook and spend more time there. Last year Gleit took the lead on a popular feature that lets users subscribe to News Feeds without having to become Facebook friends.

Those kinds of efforts are crucial, especially in markets where Facebook's growth has slowed just as the company comes under intense pressure from Wall Street to ramp up its advertising business.

"I have this deep faith in the power of the vision and in the impact we can have," Gleit said. "We still haven't achieved anything near what I think we can."


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