Mark Zuckerberg falls out of the top 10 wealthiest people in America list for the first time in years
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Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has officially fallen from the top ten wealthiest people on the planet as his company’s stock continues to plummet.
The Facebook founder’s ongoing business woes have seen him lose half of his fortune in the past year, which has led him to drop from the third richest human to number 11 on the Forbes 400 list of America's wealthiest people.
It's reportedly the first time since 2015 that Zuckerberg has found himself outside the top 10 list.
As it currently stands, the tech entrepreneur is worth $50.8 billion (AUD $78.9b or £47.3b).
Since Zuckerberg revamped Facebook as Meta, it’s all been downhill from there, as the CEO’s company investments don’t seem to be paying off.
According to CNBC, Meta has lost 61 per cent of its value in the last six months, with the company reportedly losing 14 per cent in September, its lowest drop since the pandemic.
Laura Martin, senior internet analyst at Needham & Co, told Bloomberg that Zuckerberg’s company’s stock is being ‘dragged down’ by investments in the metaverse and ‘has to get these users back from TikTok’.
Meanwhile, it also didn’t help that Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen gave a testimony in front of US senators in October last year, claiming Meta compromises the safety of its users.
Haugen, a former data scientist at the tech giant, called for urgent external regulation to reduce the harm its platforms are causing, specifically to young children, as per The Guardian.
During a parliamentary hearing, Haugen said that the company prioritises profits over anything else and ‘there is no will at the top to make sure these systems are run in an adequately safe way’.
She added: “Until we bring in a counterweight, these things will be operated for the shareholders’ interest and not the public interest.”
Following the scandal, senior Harvard Business School fellow Bill George told CNBC that Zuckerberg’s reputation had been irreversibly damaged, and the company would continue to suffer while he was the face of Meta.
He said: "I think Facebook is not going to do well as long as he's there.
"He's likely one of the reasons so many people are turning away from the company. He's really lost his way."
But despite its stock’s falling, the billionaire is confident the metaverse will make a comeback.
While appearing on The Joe Rogan Podcast, he said: “You know the next vision for the broader internet could potentially get there, you just don’t know how long it takes and what exactly Meta’s role will be… all you know right now is, essentially, it’s going to cost a lot of money.
“My goal for these next set of platforms, they are going to be more immersive, and hopefully they’ll be more useful – but I don’t necessarily want people to spend more time with computers. I just want the time that people spend with screens to be better.”
Topics: News, Technology, Money, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook