SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook profit surged in the final three months of last year as people enduring the holidays in a pandemic turned to the leading social network for work and pleasure, the company said Wednesday.
Facebook reported profit of $11.2 billion on revenue of $28 billion, increases of 53 percent and 33 percent when compared with the same period the prior year.
“We had a strong end to the year as people and businesses continued to use our services during these challenging times,” said Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg.
Facebook said its core social network had some 2.8 billion users at the end of December while 3.3 billion people used at least one of its “family” of apps including Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger.
Facebook shares that ended the formal trading day down 3.5 percent remained little changed in after-market trades that followed release of the earnings figures.
The Silicon Valley colossus noted in the release that it faces “significant uncertainty” in the coming year.
Facebook takes in the bulk of its revenue from advertising, and said that it benefited as the pandemic accelerated a shift to online commerce, particularly for products as opposed to services such as booking travel.
“Looking forward, a moderation or reversal in one or both of these trends could serve as a headwind to our advertising revenue growth,” Facebook said in the release.
Facebook also warned that it expects to face strong “headwinds” on an evolving regulatory landscape and from moves such as an Apple change to its mobile operating system making it tougher to target ads.