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Facebook Cuts Costs as Meta Platforms Stock Tanks

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Facebook parent Meta Platforms posted earnings that fell short of forecasts on Wednesday, plunging the company’s stock in after-hours trading as the social media giant with metaverse ambitions scrambles to slash expenses amid advertising headwinds caused by global economic concerns.

The claim comes less than a month after billionaire CEO Mark Zuckerberg outlined massive cost-cutting plans that included restructuring teams and implementing a hiring freeze.

According to Forbes, Meta reported a net income of $4.4 billion, or $1.64 per share, down 49% year on year and falling short of analyst forecasts of $1.89 per share; revenue of $27.7 billion was somewhat higher than the $27.4 billion forecasted, but down 4% year on year.

The corporation also stated that its revenue for the current quarter would be between $30 billion and $32.5 billion, which is at the lower end of average analyst projections.

Meta shares fell 11% to $115 soon after the report, bringing losses to more than 61% this year, significantly worse than the Nasdaq’s 30% drop.

Bank of America analyst Justin Post downgraded Meta shares to a neutral rating in a pre-earnings note, stating that the company’s investment in the immersive virtual reality world known as the metaverse “will remain [an] overhang” on the stock, costing an estimated $10.7 billion next year even as economic concerns potentially intensify.

Facebook Cuts Costs as Parent Meta Stock Tumbles in 4th Quarter

Meta Platforms Restructuring

The report comes less than a month after Meta Platforms revealed plans to cut costs by restructuring some departments and putting a hiring freeze as ad revenue growth slows amid growing economic pressures:

On Monday, an investor with more than $300 million in stock asked the corporation to cut costs further by laying off workers.

In the earnings release, Meta Platforms CFO David Wehner stated that the company has “increased scrutiny on all areas of operating expenses,” but it also stated that its employee headcount would remain roughly flat from current levels next year; in the third quarter, the company’s free cash flow, which measures cash left over after operating expenses, fell to $173 million from $9.5 billion a year ago.

$47.2 billion in total. That was the value of Meta founder Mark Zuckerberg, 38, after the market closed on Wednesday.

Zuckerberg’s fortune, once valued at more than $130 billion, has dropped by more than 60% since Meta stock peaked in September 2021.

VOR News

Meta Platforms Investor Urges CEO Mark Zuckerberg to Cut Costs

Mr. Zuckerberg, according to Altimeter Capital Chief Executive Brad Gerstner, must take urgent actions to streamline Meta’s operations and address a precipitous drop in the share price.

“Like many other organizations in a zero-rate environment,” Mr. Gerstner wrote in the letter, “Meta has gone into the realm of excess—too many people, too many ideas, too little urgency.” “Meta needs to rediscover its mojo.”

Meta Platforms shares have fallen more than 50% in the last 18 months, slashing the company’s market worth by more than $600 billion. On Wednesday, Meta will disclose profits after the bell.

Meta did not respond to the letter. Altimeter did not reply immediately to a request for comment.

According to FactSet, Altimeter, which manages over $18 billion, owned around 2.5 million Meta shares at the end of the second quarter. This position, at around $320 million, is not among Meta’s top 15 institutional shareholders.

Mr. Gerstner stated that his firm, which is based in Boston and has operations in Meta’s hometown of Menlo Park, Calif., has been a longtime shareholder in the company but now believes it needs to “become fit and focused.”

Mr. Gerstner stated that Meta should slash headcount expenses by 20%, reflecting the opinions of others who have recently suggested that digital businesses have become bloated with too many staff after years of expansion.

“It’s a well-kept secret in Silicon Valley that firms like Google, Meta, Twitter, and Uber could produce comparable levels of revenue with significantly fewer workers,” he claimed.

Meta reported 83,553 employees at the end of the second quarter, a 32% increase from the previous year.

Like many other IT companies, Meta has been slashing costs for months, dealing with slowed growth and growing competition.

Mr. Gerstner also advised the business to reduce its investment in the metaverse, which Mr. Zuckerberg has hailed as the company’s future and estimated would require more than $10 billion in annual spending.

Mr. Gerstner advised the corporation to cap its spending at $5 billion per year, describing Meta’s commitment as “super-sized and alarming, even by Silicon Valley norms.”

Despite enormous investment thus far, the company is falling short of its metaverse aspirations to create an immersive online experience where users may work, buy, and play.

According to The Wall Street Journal, their primary metaverse service for consumers, Horizon Worlds, has less than 200,000 monthly active users.

“People are perplexed as to what the metaverse even is,” Mr. Gerstner wrote.

Mr. Gerstner emphasized that he was not making demands and believed in Meta’s future.

Source: WSJ, Forbes, VOR News

Business

Sony To Lay Off 900 At PlayStation As Tough Times For The Video Games Industry Persist

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Sony said on Tuesday that it will lose 900 jobs, or 8% of PlayStation’s global workforce.

According to a PlayStation news statement, Sony Interactive Entertainment’s layoffs will affect all regions, with its in-house London studio, which is responsible for the competitive singing video game “Singstar,” closing entirely.

“These are incredibly talented people who have contributed to our success, and we are very grateful,” said Jim Ryan, president and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment. “However, the industry has changed immensely, and we need to future ready ourselves to set the business up for what lies ahead.”

sony

Sony To Lay Off 900 At PlayStation As Tough Times For The Video Games Industry Persist

According to Bloomberg, the personnel cut comes after the business lowered its sales expectations for the year and Naomi Matsuouka, Sony’s senior vice president, stated that the PlayStation 5 console was nearing the end of its lifecycle.

Ryan stated in September that he would resign as president of Sony Group Corporation in March. Hiroki Totoki, the COO and CFO, will serve as interim CEO.

sony

Sony To Lay Off 900 At PlayStation As Tough Times For The Video Games Industry Persist

The incoming CEO will face an entire tech sector in turmoil, with industry giants laying off 5,500 staff in the first two weeks of 2024 alone.

Specifically, the video gaming industry has seen employment losses from 2023 into this year, with Epic Games slashing 830 workers last September and Tencent’s Riot Games laying off 11% of its workforce in January.

sony

Sony To Lay Off 900 At PlayStation As Tough Times For The Video Games Industry Persist

In his email to employees, Ryan echoed the leadership of those other game firms, saying, “We had to step back, look at our business holistically, and move forward focusing on the company’s long-term sustainability and delivering the best experiences possible for our community.”

Sony Group Corporation’s (SONY) stock declined less than 1% after the announcement on Tuesday.

SOURCE – (CNN)

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Sideways Moon Landing Cuts Mission Short, Private US Lunar Lander Will Stop Working Tuesday

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CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida – A private US lunar lander’s mission was cut short after landing sideways near the moon’s south pole. It is likely to stop operational on Tuesday.

Intuitive Machines, the Houston-based firm that developed and flew the spacecraft, announced Monday that it will continue to collect data until the solar panels no longer receive sunlight. Officials estimate this to happen early Tuesday, based on the Earth’s and moon’s positions. That falls two to three days short of the week that NASA and other clients had anticipated.

The lander, dubbed Odysseus, is the first U.S. spacecraft to land on the moon in over 50 years, carrying experiments for NASA, the primary sponsor. However, it arrived too quickly last Thursday, and the foot of one of its six legs caught on the surface, forcing it to tip over, according to company authorities.

According to photographs taken by NASA’s lunar reconnaissance orbiter, Odysseus landed within a mile (1.5 kilometres) of its planned target at the Malapert A crater, roughly 185 miles (300 kilometres) from the moon’s south pole.

The LRO shots from 56 miles (90 km) above show the lander on the surface, but it is hardly visible in the blurry images. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s camera-ejecting experiment, which was supposed to record photographs of the lander as they both dropped, was called off shortly before touchdown due to a last-minute navigation difficulty.

moon

Sideways Moon Landing Cuts Mission Short, Private US Lunar Lander Will Stop Working Tuesday

According to NASA, the lander landed in a small, deteriorated crater with a 12-degree slope. That is the closest a spacecraft has ever gotten near the south pole, which is important due to probably frozen water in the permanently shadowed craters.

NASA, which intends to land astronauts in this region in the coming years, paid Intuitive Machines $118 million to bring six experiments to the surface. Other customers had things on board.

moon

Sideways Moon Landing Cuts Mission Short, Private US Lunar Lander Will Stop Working Tuesday

Instead of landing upright, the 14-foot (4.3-meter) Odysseus landed on its side, limiting its connection with Earth. The overturned lander covered up some antennas, and those that remained exposed ended up near the ground, resulting in intermittent communications. The solar panels were much closer to the surface than expected, which was less than optimal given the mountainous terrain. Even in the best circumstances, Odysseus only had a week to function on the surface before the long lunar night began.

Since the 1960s, only the United States, Russia, China, India, and Japan have successfully landed on the moon, with the United States being the only one with crews. Japan’s lander also ended up on the wrong side last month.

Despite its tilted landing, Intuitive Machines was the first private company to join the privileged group. Another American company, Astrobotic Technology, attempted it last month but could not reach the moon due to a fuel leak.

moon

Sideways Moon Landing Cuts Mission Short, Private US Lunar Lander Will Stop Working Tuesday

Intuitive Machines almost failed as well. Ground teams only activated the lander’s navigational lasers after its launch from Florida on February 15. The mistake was noticed when Odysseus circled the moon, forcing flight controllers to rely on a NASA laser-navigating gadget only on board as an experiment.

As it turned out, NASA’s test lasers guided Odysseus to a nearly perfect landing, marking the first moon landing by a U.S. spacecraft since the Apollo programme.

Twelve Apollo astronauts walked on the moon from 1969 to 1972. While NASA occasionally sent satellites around the moon, the United States launched another moon-landing mission this month. Astrobotic’s aborted voyage was the first in NASA’s programme to promote commercial lunar delivery.

Both Intuitive Machines and Astrobotics have NASA contracts for additional lunar landings.

SOURCE – (AP)

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AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

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Nvidia’s market value has reached $2 trillion (£1.58 trillion), marking a new milestone in the chipmaker’s meteoric rise to the ranks of the world’s most valuable corporations.

Shares of the Silicon Valley corporation gained more than 4% in opening trading on Friday before falling slightly.

The gains built on the company’s impressive earnings announcement earlier this week.

nvidia

AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

The company is profiting from improvements in artificial intelligence (AI), which has boosted demand for its processors.

The company’s turnover doubled last year to more than $60 billion, and CEO Jensen Huang told investors this week that demand was “surging” worldwide.

The corporation, which became worth $1 trillion less than a year ago, is now the world’s fourth most valuable publicly traded company, trailing Microsoft, Apple, and Saudi Aramco.

nvidia

AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

After shares fell from their early Friday highs, the company’s market capitalization ended the day just under $2 trillion.

Nvidia was founded in 1993 and was originally recognized for producing computer processors that processed images, primarily for computer games.

Long before the AI revolution, it began adding capabilities to its chips that it claims to aid in machine learning, which has helped it acquire market dominance.

It is currently regarded as a vital company to monitor how quickly AI-powered technology spreads throughout the commercial world.

The firm’s stock price has more than tripled the previous year, from less than $240 per share to about $800 in midday trading on Friday.

On Thursday, the day after its earnings release, purchasers snapped up shares, boosting its value by $277 billion, the greatest one-day rise in Wall Street history.

He research has also contributed to a larger market rise, appearing to persuade investors that, as Derren Nathan of Hargreaves Lansdown put it, the AI boom is “living up to the hype”.

nvidia

AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

“It’s being used in automotive for design, in telecommunications for network planning, and in mainstream companies to figure out and get insights into data that they haven’t been able to get before,” Bob
O’Donnell, a technology analyst based in the United States, told the BBC earlier this week.

“This is now really starting to hit the kinds of companies across the board, not just specialized tech companies and that’s a real tipping point for the industry.”

SOURCE – (BBC)

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