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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg tightens grip on helm as profit soars

The California-based social network takes in from advertising alone soared 57 percent in the quarter

Policy Pulse
Publish Date: Apr 28 2016 2:11PM | Updated Date: Apr 28 2016 2:11PM

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg tightens grip on helm as profit soars
Facebook on Wednesday fielded a plan to tighten Mark Zuckerberg's grip on the helm as the booming social network reported stellar profit.

Profit in the first quarter tripled from a year ago to $1.5 billion as revenue jumped to $5.4 billion from $3.5 billion in the same period a year earlier.
"We had a great start to the year," said Facebook co-founder and chief executive Zuckerberg.
The key metric of monthly active users rose to 1.65 billion, up 15 percent from a year ago. And those using Facebook daily rose 16 percent to 1.09 billion, with strong gains in numbers of people using mobile devices.
The report shows Facebook is using its dominant position in social media to boost advertising revenues as it connects more people with new services such as live video.
Facebook also announced that its board of directors approved a plan to create a non-voting class of stock intended to raise capital while leaving Zuckerberg in control of the company's vision and direction.
Shareholders will get to vote on the proposal at an annual stockholders meeting on June 20, according to Facebook.
The move aims to allow Zuckerberg to remain in charge even as he gives away the bulk of his holdings to charity as he announced last year with his wife.
"We are focused on the long-term, and that is the main reason for today's proposal," Zuckerberg said during an earnings call.
"Facebook has been built by a series of bold moves. And when I look out at the future, I see more bold moves ahead of us than behind us...I am committed to seeing this mission through."
Zuckerberg noted that Facebook has always been a founder-led company, and that has allowed it to focus on long-term goals without succumbing to takeover offers or critics.
Facebook, like Google, went public in a way that kept control in the hands of founders instead of putting it in the grasp of shareholders.
"Today's board proposal will allow us to do what we do well, and fund the Chan (Zuckerberg) Initiative," he said.
The initiative takes aim at global challenges such as curing diseases, improving education, and protecting the environment from climate change, according to Zuckerberg.
"If you want to increase your control, now is the time to do it so people won't fight you," analyst Rob Enderle of Enderle Group said of the share structuring move.
"If you buy into Facebook, you are buying into Zuckerberg and his team; and they are executing very well right now."
Facebook shares were up more than nine percent to $118.81 in after-market trades that followed release of the earnings report.