Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth has fallen by $70 billion this year, dropping him to the 20th place on the list of richest people in the world.
Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index estimates that Zuckerberg’s fortune was worth $125 billion at the beginning of the year. The numbers show that it has since fallen to $55.3 billion, a little over 55% decrease. According to Forbes, he is worth $53.4 billion.
Since Zuckerberg said last October that Meta would become a “metaverse” firm and subsequently debuted a significant redesign, the corporation, which owns Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Oculus, has had a turbulent last year.
In the fourth quarter of 2021, Facebook reported its first-ever fall in daily active users, losing almost one million. The firm was also embroiled in controversy last autumn when whistleblower Frances Haugen released material from confidential corporate files. She claimed to have seen internal studies that indicated Instagram was linked to eating problems and suicide ideation among adolescent females.
In the second quarter compared to the same period in 2021, Meta’s net income decreased by 36%, or more than $3 billion.
According to the company’s April proxy statement, it invested $10 billion or about 50% of its capital budget on the metaverse in 2021. Over 10,000 people reportedly worked on Meta’s metaverse projects as of April.
In May, at the company’s annual shareholder meeting, Zuckerberg stated, “The metaverse business for us isn’t really going to be a meaningful contributor to the business until at a minimum much later in this decade, and probably realistically this decade is going to be about setting the foundation for that, and then the 2030s are really where this is going to contribute a lot to the profits of this company.”
He said prosperous businesses should invest in R&D “to help push the world forward.”
In 2022, Meta reduced employment due to the general tech industry’s economic crisis. According to reports, Meta has almost a third fewer engineers on this year’s hiring list.
Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, is by far the richest person on the list; according to Bloomberg, he is worth $268 billion.
The remaining top five individuals are former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, French luxury goods tycoon Bernard Arnault, and Indian entrepreneur Gautam Adani.
Zuckerberg is ranked 20th, only after Jim, Rob, and Alice Walton, the offspring of Sam Walton, the co-founder of Walmart.