BUSINESS – Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has come under a lot of pressure this year, one complaint following another. He has now said that the platform is planning “significant” investments in 2019. This is to boost cyber security and new product initiatives. Zuckerberg looks to address user concerns and challenge Apple and Alphabet-owned YouTube.
Zuckerberg’s comments came after Facebook reported mixed quarterly results on Tuesday, easily topping earnings expectations but falling short on quarterly revenue and active users. Zuckerberg said the spending would occur to boost user and data protections. Also, to focus on Facebook’s video and private messaging services.
“I expect 2019 to be another year of significant investment,” Zuckerberg said, acknowledging that Facebook trails YouTube in video streaming services and Apple in messaging, respectively.
Facebook CFO David Wehner is confident the company’s expenses could rise by as much as 50 percent in 2019. Company shares seesawed in after-hours trading as Wall Street digested quarterly results and Zuckerberg’s remarks.
The company reported third-quarter earnings per share of $1.76, more than the $1.47 expected by Wall Street firms, according to Refinitiv data. Third-quarter revenue was $13.73 billion, below a projected $13.78 billion.