Snap co-founder and CEO Evan Spiegel is leading the company with a plummeting share price, competition from a much bigger competitor in the industry, and painful staff cuts — but he’s not ready to give up.
“When I look at the long-term opportunities in our business, I really think they are huge,” Spiegel said while speaking with Kara Swisher and Scott Galloway at the Vox Media Code Conference in Beverly Hills, California on Wednesday. “I believe that we are far from reaching our full potential. And I think over time the share price went up and down, and we tried to focus on delivering real value to shareholders.”
Snap’s share price has lost about 76 percent of its value since the start of this year. Company last week laid off 20 percent of its workforce, or more than 1,200 employees, one of the largest in a recent wave of tech layoffs. The company has also decided to cancel at least six of its products, including the Pixy drone.
At the same time, Spiegel is facing serious competition from social media giant Meta, which invested $10 billion last year in AR/VR-related initiatives similar to what Snap has been working on for a long time with its Spectacles video recording glasses and others. . hardware projects.
“What gives me great hope is that, as you know, historically in our industry, spending a lot of money has not always correlated with long-term success,” Spiegel said. He added that even if the company’s competitors have “more money”, this does not mean that they will win. “In fact, I think what’s happening is that many of those companies that are spending a lot more shouldn’t be making hard choices.”
Snap is one of several consumer technology companies that have been hit hard by recent inflation and global economic uncertainty, as well as recent changes to Apple’s privacy settings that have made it harder for social media companies to advertise to mobile users. .
These factors have led to hiring freezes and layoffs at some of the world’s most valuable companies such as Google and Facebook. But the impact has been especially strong on Snap, which is a relatively small company with fewer sources of revenue. The company also expanded its staff last year. employment of more than 2000 people.
Even amid recent financial troubles, Snap continues to significantly expand its user base and has about 347 million daily users. However, to continue doing so, the 32-year-old CEO will have to face this economic downturn and fierce competition.
“I haven’t found a magic solution or answer because I also feel a huge responsibility,” Spiegel said. “And that’s why I’m always being pulled in a million directions.”