Mark Zuckerberg's Metaverse Bet Similar to Marissa Mayer Yahoo

Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse Bet Similar to Marissa Mayer Yahoo

  • Mark Zuckerberg is making the same mistakes that plagued former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer.
  • Mayer made ambitious bets that never came to fruition for Yahoo, which was eventually sold to Verizon.
  • Zuckerberg is also making a big bet on the Metaverse, which is the most suitable option for the venture capital world.

The Internet giant whose growth is slowing. Brilliant CEO leads an ambitious bet. Employee base fears high demands and impending layoffs.

That’s what’s happening inside Meta now. It’s also what happened nearly a decade ago at Yahoo.

With Meta turning into a “metaverse” amid stagnating user growth and slowing ad sales, stories are emerging about the growing pains that have emerged along with the changes. New York times On Sunday, it reported that current and former employees are skeptical about the push toward augmented and virtual reality, and fear changing CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s priorities.

Their concerns began to echo the internal turmoil at Yahoo under Marissa Mayer, a period that ended with Mayer stepping aside and selling the company for a fraction of what it was previously worth. Now, years after Yahoo’s failed turnaround, Zuckerberg is repeating Mayer’s mistakes.

The metaverse is an extraordinarily risky part for a top tech CEO

Mark Zuckerberg presents his avatar

Mark Zuckerberg presents his avatar during Connect 2021

Facebook



Zuckerberg announced nearly a year ago that Facebook would change its name and change its focus — he said at the time that the metaverse was the company’s “new North Star.” Over time, Zuckerberg is betting that people will live and work in a virtual world and interact using avatars.

But that’s exactly what it is – a bet – and a risk for the 18-year-old company.

Zuckerberg’s metaverse play is no stranger to the tech world, it’s not just a game we’ve often seen come to fruition outside the realm of venture capital. Unlike venture capital that can make dozens of risky bets on startups in the hopes of becoming the next billion dollar company, Meta doesn’t necessarily have that ability, nor that luxury — after all, it has VR headsets to make. , social media platforms to grow, and advertising dollars to redeem.

Meanwhile, the Meta is pumping time and resources into the metaverse and bleeding money along the way. The company lost $10 billion on its big bet in 2021 — a large sum even by Meta standards — and Zuckerberg told shareholders this year that this trend will continue for the next three to five years.

And while Zuckerberg has been clear he’s playing the long game when it comes to metaverses, it’s a game he needs to win, an industry veteran told Insider earlier this year.

“Facebook has the guts, the capital, and the ability to make it work and become a major player,” the person said. “But they can’t be wrong.”

Marissa Mayer also had an ambitious vision – but it didn’t come to fruition

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer

Former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer.

AFP/Eric Risberg



If this rings any bells for you, you’ve likely lived through the rise and fall of Yahoo.

As Insider Global Editor-in-Chief Nick Carlson writes: His 2014 book on MayerYahoo, too, was an advertising giant. By 2004, the company had a net profit of $3.5 billion and a market capitalization of $128 billion. But competition from competitors like eBay and Google — and later, ironically, Facebook — quickly started to dry up. By 2012, Yahoo’s value had fallen to about $20 billion.

Enter Mayer, who is tasked with restoring Yahoo’s position as one of the world’s leading tech companies, which could rival Google, Facebook, Apple and Amazon.

Meyer’s bets were as bold as they were unfocused: Make a Yahoo for Everything! Hire Katie Couric for $5 Million a Year! Create scripts like Netflix! Blogging platform Tumblr purchased for $1.1 billion! But none of those big bets paid off. Two years after its arrival, Yahoo’s exciting turnaround has yet to materialize and the company’s revenue has remained stagnant.

In 2016, the era of independent Yahoo ended when Verizon paid $5 billion to acquire Yahoo and merge it with AOL. Mayer resigned as CEO.

There are other aspects of Zuckerberg’s position that reflect Mayer’s position

A man with a blue umbrella with his back against the meta emblem.

meta logo

Arend Wegmann/Reuters



Internally, Meta began to mirror Yahoo’s Mayer.

Meta employees who spoke to The Times described frequent strategic shifts that appear to be rooted in Zuckerberg’s desires rather than tangible data, as well as Zuckerberg’s willingness to spend huge amounts of money on projects that have no guarantee of success, a lot of money made by former Oculus exec John Carmack he made it “Sick to my stomach.”

Similarly, at Yahoo, Mayer has been described as making decisions from intuition rather than data, such as when Yahoo paid up to $10 million per year to host the “Saturday Night Live” archive, or when it appointed Couric as the site’s “global broadcaster,” even after the failure of Previous site videos.

Then there is the company culture. Mayer implemented a controversial performance rating system during her tenure intended to inspire hard work and explore underperforming employees, but it backfired, demoralizing the workforce and lowering morale.

Zuckerberg now also appears keen to weed out low-performing employees and employees who aren’t on board with his metaverse vision. At an all-hands meeting in June, he told employees that Meta would “sharpen” performance targets to weed out unrelated employees. Insider reported this month that it now appears that Meta is shifting performance expectations and urging managers to push employees out.

If Zuckerberg is right and the future is the future, these moves are wise and will help push Meta ahead of the competition. And there’s reason to believe his ambitious plan will work — after all, Zuckerberg actually reinvented Facebook once when he foresaw the switch from desktop to mobile, a strategy Even his former number two, Sheryl Sandberg, thought it was too risky in time.

But if his bet doesn’t pay off, we could see the Meta go the Yahoo route.

#Mark #Zuckerbergs #Metaverse #Bet #Similar #Marissa #Mayer #Yahoo

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