The Facebook Economy supports 232,000 jobs in Europe

24 Jan 2012

Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg

The growth of Facebook and mobile apps over recent years has supported 232,000 jobs and Facebook contributes €15.3bn of economic impact to the European Union’s gross domestic product, a new study by Deloitte reveals.

In the UK alone, Facebook has supported 32,000 jobs and contributed an estimated €2.6bn (stg£2.2bn) to the UK’s GDP.

The figures were revealed by Facebook’s chief operations officer Sheryl Sandberg at the DLD conference in Munich.

“Today’s report shows that Facebook is about a lot more than sharing pictures or keeping up with friends; increasingly social media means growth and jobs,” Sandberg said.

“As the Deloitte study highlights, social media is proving particularly valuable for small and medium-sized businesses, which form the backbone of the European economy.”

The report claims there is already a so-called App Economy worth €561m (stg£467m) in the UK alone, as businesses have sprung up building apps and games for the Facebook platform.

This activity on its own has generated 7,500 jobs so far in the UK.

Facebook’s business participation efforts

Facebook and Deloitte’s study gives an interesting insight into the business participation efforts Facebook is making in the UK.

Apparently, Facebook already supports €1.37bn (stg£1.14bn) in ‘business participation efforts’ in the UK, as predominantly small businesses use Facebook’s free pages to promote their brands and generate new business.

This activity supports 18,400 jobs.

No figures are currently available for the impact of such activity in the neighbouring Irish market, where Facebook employs more than 200 people and is about to embark on a major expansion.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years