Will Metaverse Losses Continue To Skyrocket?


Who could stop Mark Zuckerberg’s expensive pivot from Meta Platforms (META) to the metaverse? It’ll have to be one of the investors who hold the most significant losses.

A recent Investor’s Business Daily analysis found that just ten investors, excluding Mark Zuckerberg, own the largest chunk of Facebook. That’s more than even Zuckerberg owns, at 13%. The analysis also showed that these investors own a third of the company, outranking Zuckerberg.

It’s unlikely that these investors are happy with how the company has performed in recent months. When it decided to shift from social media to virtual reality a year ago, it watched as $211 billion of its current positions were slashed. Zuckerberg has lost nearly $86 billion this year, and these investors have lost even more.

“Meta, which has already been struggling to adapt to changes in Apple’s mobile ad-tracking policies, saw its advertising revenue decline about 4% year over year in the September quarter,” says a report from S&P Global Market Intelligence. “Meta is currently pivoting its core focus from social media to the future metaverse, but this is also not sitting well with investors.”

The Debate on Meta

Some investors criticized the company for shifting its business strategy last year.

Shares of Meta are at 89.48 after this year – that’s down 73% from where they were over the past year. That’s to say; Meta is worth $650 billion less than it was before this time last year. This year, it has fallen in value more than any other company in the S&P 500 index.

If you own shares in Communication Services companies, you also bear a heavy burden. Meta is 17% of the XLC Communication Services Sector SPDR ETF (XLC), 12% of the VOX Vanguard Communications ETF (VOX), and 10% of the IXP iShares Global Telco ETF (IXP).

Should these ETF giants speak up?

Meta is somewhat unusual among S&P 500 companies in that the founder, Zuckerberg, is still a top shareholder with 347.8 million shares. Surprisingly, ETF giants own even more than he does–a total of 505.1 million shares.

The second largest Amazon stockholder is Vanguard, with more than 180.4 million shares. That accounts for 6.8% of the company and is worth more than $44 billion.

Another ETF powerhouse, BlackRock, is Meta’s No. 3 largest holder, with 152 million shares valued at 5.7% of the company. BlackRock has lost more than $37 billion this year due to the stock’s performance. Rounding out the top 5 holders are other players in ETFs and mutual funds like American Funds’ parent Capital Research, who hold a 4.5% position, and Fidelity FMR, who have a 4.2% position.

Uber’s worth has been estimated to be over $62 billion, and its most prominent stakeholders are some of the most influential individuals in Silicon Valley. As of right now, though, much of that money is concentrated among two people: co-founder Garrett Camp, who holds 0.55%, and co-founder Travis Kalanick, with a whopping 15%.

The question on everyone’s mind is whether or not activists will be drawn to the newly-reduced price.

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