Mark Zuckerberg Net Worth

December 6, 2011 by staff 

Mark Zuckerberg Net Worth, That’s the question many people are asking amid rising chatter that the booming social network plans to go public in 2012 and raise up to $10 billion in a deal that could value the company at more than $100 billion.

If Facebook’s IPO succeeds, it would be one of the largest public offerings in U.S. history and make the seven-year-old company worth more than iconic American firms like McDonald’s, Citigroup, and Kraft Foods. It would also turn founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg into one of the richest people in the world, with an estimated net worth of roughly $20 billion.

How could a company that doesn’t charge its users or make any tangible goods become one of the titans of American capitalism in less than a decade, worth $100 billion?

Facebook’s phenomenal growth has been propelled by the network effect of millions of people connected to each other by the Internet, and the increasingly sophisticated practice of targeted advertising. Zuckerberg, perhaps more than any other Internet entrepreneur of the last decade, has been able to synthesize these two trends into a wildly successful business. With nearly 1 billion users around the world, Facebook has become a truly massive web platform and serves as the primary vehicle for an ever-increasing amount of web activity and commerce.

Google remains the leader in so-called search advertising, which delivers text ads to web users based on the search terms they type into Google. But the battle is shifting to more sophisticated display ads, the bigger, more visually dynamic ads that increasingly incorporate video and sound. And in this fast-growing market, Facebook is surging, now serving nearly twice as many display ads as Google, according to eMarketer.

If Facebook does go public next year, it will likely be the penultimate act in a dramatic – and at times melodramatic – series of Internet IPOs that have occurred since the beginning of 2011. Many of the recent offerings have performed poorly, despite the predictable first-day spikes as insiders cash in quickly. Discount sales website Groupon and web-radio service Pandora have both seen their stock prices fall below their initial offering prices, pouring cold water on what some had called a nascent Internet IPO boom. Early investors got rich off Groupon, of course, but the company has been a shambles of late: It recently lost its second high-profile chief operating officer in six months and had to restate its already-unprofitable 2010 results down 50%. LinkedIn, a social network for professionals, remains above its IPO price, but is barely showing a profit.

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