Meta steps into ‘year of efficiency’ as it reports strong earnings

2 Feb 2023

Image: © Askar/

Mark Zuckerberg said that Meta will aim to become ‘a stronger and more nimble organisation’ in 2023.

Meta has shocked the market with a stronger-than-expected revenue performance and a steady increase in users of its family of apps.

While revenue is still in decline for the third consecutive quarter, it came in at $32.17bn which exceeded the expected $31.53bn according to Refinitiv but marked a 4pc year-on-year drop. This brings annual revenue for 2022 to $116.61bn, a 1pc decline from the previous year.

Meanwhile, the company’s costs and expenses in the latest quarter increased 22pc year-on-year to $25.8bn.

Meta said it expects revenue in the first quarter to be in the range of $26bn and $28.5bn – where analysts were expecting it to be around $27.1bn. The company will be able to end its continuous sales decline if revenue reaches the higher end of its forecast this quarter.

Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg hailed 2023 as the “year of efficiency” as Meta focuses on becoming “a stronger and more nimble organisation” this year.

“Our community continues to grow, and I’m pleased with the strong engagement across our apps,” said Zuckerberg. “The progress we’re making on our AI discovery engine and Reels are major drivers of this.”

Facebook reached a key milestone of 2bn daily active users while its monthly active users now stands at nearly 3bn. Daily active users of Meta’s family of apps, including Instagram, was also nearly 3bn while monthly active users stood at $3.74bn – nearly half the world’s population.

Susan Li, Meta’s chief financial officer, also announced several cost cutting measures. The company’s expenses are now expected to be between $89bn to $95bn. This is down from the prior outlook of $94bn to $100bn due to slower anticipated growth in payroll expenses and cost of revenue.

Restructuring charges in 2023 are also down by about half while capital expenditures are being lowered by a few billion – reflecting plans for lower data centre construction spend in 2023 as Meta shifts to a new data centre architecture that is more cost efficient.

“In addition, as previously noted, we continue to monitor developments regarding the viability of transatlantic data transfers and their potential impact on our European operations,” said Li.

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Vish Gain is a journalist with Silicon Republic