Zuckerberg to get $700mn in Meta dividends day after apologising to parents over children safety

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Mark Zuckerberg, the Chief Executive Officer of Meta Platforms Inc, the parent company overseeing social media giants Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, is poised to receive an annual dividend of $700 million. The announcement follows Meta’s disclosure on Thursday that it would issue its first-ever quarterly dividend to investors, in a significant development since Facebook’s Initial Public Offering in 2012.

The development comes a day after Zuckerberg faced one of the most significant moments of public scrutiny during a US Senate judiciary committee hearing on Wednesday (Feb 1), where Zuckerberg and other tech executives were questioned about the impact of their platforms on young users.

During the hearing, lawmakers discussed potential legislation that could remove legal immunity for content posted on Meta and similar platforms. This follows a massive lawsuit filed by the attorneys general of 41 states, criticising Meta’s impact on young users. 

How Meta is in position to give $700mn to Zuckerberg?

Despite Meta’s decision to cut its workforce by 22 per cent, reducing the total headcount to approximately 19,000, the company reported $40 billion in revenues for the final quarter of the previous year, surpassing Wall Street expectations. 

Quarterly profits tripled to $14 billion, driven by a rebound in advertising sales. Meta also launched a substantial $50 billion share buyback program.

Also watch | Gravitas | Meta CEO grilled: The sorry state of Mark Zuckerberg

Zuckerberg, also said that Meta would pay its first dividend as a public company at 50 cents per share. He announced that this $1.25 billion distribution to investors would be the inaugural installment of regular payouts. 

With approximately 350 million shares in his possession, Zuckerberg stands to accumulate around $700 million in dividends over the first year of this new policy.

Meta turns 20 in Feb 2024

The 39-year-old CEO, whose total compensation in 2022 amounted to $27 million, made this financial revelation as Meta commemorates its 20th anniversary this month. 

(With inputs from agencies)

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