Breakingviews

Facebook mobile growth accelerates down open road

January 27, 2016

Revenue from smartphone and tablet ads grew a whopping 81 pct last quarter year-over-year, accounting for most of the social-media giant’s $5.8 bln total revenue. With companies getting more comfortable touting wares on digital devices, Facebook still has plenty of room to expand.

Zuckerberg’s supervoting shares prove double-edged

December 2, 2015

Investors may one day regret the founder’s grip on Facebook. For now, though, it allows him to retain control while starting a long process of giving away 99 pct of his $45 bln of stock. The beneficiaries of Zuckerberg’s charity will see the silver lining to the governance flaw.

Mark Zuckerberg raises philanthropic bar to 99 pct

December 1, 2015

It’s not disruption, but Facebook’s founder has built on The Giving Pledge championed by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates. Zuckerberg will give away nearly all his wealth, not half, in his lifetime. After moving fast and breaking things, he’s moving judiciously and learning things.

Tech crunched between clashing U.S.-EU privacy law

November 10, 2015

Facebook got dinged in Belgium for secretly tracking visitors, while Spokeo’s similarly nosy conduct will probably go unpunished in America. Yet in neither case could victims prove they were harmed. The disparate outcomes highlight the need for more uniform data-gathering rules.

Facebook a master at hooking users on mobile habit

November 5, 2015

The social network reported more than 1 bln active daily visitors, a testament to its success in persuading people to check in on smartphones and tablets. Its reward was a 40 pct rise in ad revenue. Future growth may depend on pushing this kind of digital addiction.

U.S. trucker offers Facebook owners ride to future

May 7, 2015

Swift Transportation and the social networking giant face votes to dump feudalistic dual-share structures. Upset about their founder-CEO, the decades-old shipper’s second-class holders backed the idea last year. Facebook owners one day may find themselves similarly frustrated.

Facebook investment largesse manageable – for now

January 29, 2015

Boss Mark Zuckerberg splashed out so much on new projects that his firm’s Q4 operating margin fell by a third. But the social network’s top line grew 49 pct thanks to more users and mobile income. That’s a reasonable dynamic, assuming Zuckerberg is picking the right ventures.

Rob Cox: Zuckerberg’s Chinese lessons are scalable

October 28, 2014

Bilingual CEOs should be the norm, not fuel for the kind of media frenzy that greeted the Facebook founder’s Q&A in Mandarin last week. Learning a foreign language doesn’t just help conquer new markets. It fosters risk-taking and new thinking, and helps eliminate biases.

Zuckerberg’s Chinese chat leaves CEOs tongue-tied

October 24, 2014

The Facebook founder surprised and delighted a Beijing audience by answering questions in Mandarin. His linguistic skills probably won’t make the social network any more welcome in the People’s Republic. But other corporate chiefs could learn from his efforts to friend China.

Facebook and Google catch glimpse of split future

October 9, 2014

Symantec and EMC may join eBay and HP in breaking up. These old-time tech companies have become unwieldy, often by acquisition. Relative newcomers like Facebook, Google and Alibaba are following a similar growth path. Investors are on board now, but their carve-up time will come.