What is Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth?

Mark Zuckerberg is one of the world’s richest people, but how did he make his money?

Mark Zuckerberg, Meta Connect
(Image credit: Bloomberg)

Mark Zuckerberg is a technology entrepreneur and philanthropist who co-founded Facebook in 2004. He currently serves as the company's CEO and holds a significant share of the business - that's where most of his net wealth comes from today. 

According to Bloomberg, Mark Zuckerberg has a total net worth of $109 billion, making him the 10th richest person in the world.

Here we look at how Mark Zuckerberg built his fortune and the factors contributing to his net wealth today.  

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 The story of Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook 

Almost all of Mark Zuckerberg’s net wealth comes from his ownership stake in Facebook, which he founded in 2003. 

While he was still a student at Harvard University he created a website called Facemash, which allowed students to rate the attractiveness of their peers. The site caused controversy and was shut down, but it gave Zuckerberg the idea for a social networking site. 

He saw the impact such a network had on the university campus as it allowed people to connect with each other in a way they hadn’t before. So, he began working on a new project that would eventually become Facebook in 2004. 

Zuckerberg enlisted the help of his roommates, Dustin Moskovitz and Eduardo Saverin, to build the new site, which they worked on in the dorm room. They were ready for launch in 2004 and initially called it "Thefacebook" when launched on February 4, 2004.

It quickly became popular. The site began life confined to the Harvard campus, but as it grew, Zuckerberg and his team began expanding it to other universities. The expansion required money, so they reached out to venture capitalists to fund the expansion. With new money came new staff, offices and new locations. 

They moved their operation to Palo Alto, California to cope with the expanding business and be amongst other high-growth startups.

However, Facebook’s growth hasn’t been without its troubles. In 2006, Zuckerberg faced a lawsuit from Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss and Divya Narendra, who claimed that he’d stolen their idea for a social networking site – the case was settled for $65 million.

Facebook site opened its doors to anyone with an email address in 2007, and the rest is history. It exploded to become one of the most popular websites in the world with billions of users and it’s also one of the world’s most powerful advertising networks. 

 From Facebook to Meta 

In a bold move, Facebook changed its name to Meta in October 2021, signalling a shift in focus towards the Metaverse. Facebook's decision to pivot towards the Metaverse came from Zuckerberg’s drive to position the business for the future. Since its pivot, the business has spent billions of dollars building out its tech and meta ecosystems, although the results have been mixed so far. 

The Metaverse is essentially a virtual universe, a fully immersive experience that gives users the feeling of being in a different world altogether. It has a wide range of applications, from gaming to education to socializing. Zuckerberg believes the Metaverse is "the next generation of the internet. It's all about creating a world where we can be present with each other in a way that isn't possible with just a phone or a computer screen."

So far, the company’s decision to focus on this market has come with nothing but losses. However, analysts believe its pivot could pay off in the long run. Some estimates suggest the Metaverse could become a multi-trillion dollar market, and based on those projections it's no surprise Facebook wants to get in on the action. 

The biggest hurdle to the group’s growth in the space is something that’s dogged Facebook for some time - privacy and security. In a virtual world privacy and security are going to become even more pressing issues, as the digital landscape will be even harder to manage than the physical world. Only time will tell if the Metaverse will live up to its hype, but Facebook's commitment to this vision is a clear signal that the company is ready to embrace the future of the internet, and it could be the next step in the company’s growth, which has been nothing short of fantastic since Zuckerberg created the platform in his dorm room all those years ago. 

Initially, Meta took the baton from Facebook and ran on its success, but trouble did follow. In late 2021 the social media site lost a record-breaking number of users for the first time in 18 years mainly thanks to rival TikTok. 

Meta lost approximately 500,000 users daily in the last quarter of 2021, leading to the biggest-ever one-day loss in market value for the company - $220bn according to The Washington Post

The good news was that Meta’s other platforms including WhatsApp and Instagram, retained users, but Zuckerberg realised that to stay relevant, his platforms had to change with the times. Meta then went on to launch Instagram Reels, while slashing cuts by up to $5bn and launching a $40bn share buyback programme to reward investors. 

Aside from the materialistic side of things, Zuckerberg likes to give back to Charity. With his ongoing feud with Billionaire Elon Musk, Zuckerberg was also willing to have an official ‘cage fight’ with Musk and donate the money to charity. 

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Jacob Wolinsky

Jacob is the founder and CEO of ValueWalk. What started as a hobby 10 years ago turned into a well-known financial media empire focusing in particular on simplifying the opaque world of the hedge fund world. Before doing ValueWalk full time, Jacob worked as an equity analyst specializing in mid and small-cap stocks. Jacob also worked in business development for hedge funds. He lives with his wife and five children in New Jersey. Full Disclosure: Jacob only invests in broad-based ETFs and mutual funds to avoid any conflict of interest.