After 14 years, Sheryl Sandberg will leave Facebook

Sheryl Sandberg is the chief operating officer at Meta, Facebook's parent company, and has announced her resignation after 14 years.

After 14 years, Sheryl Sandberg will leave Facebook

Sheryl Sandberg is the chief operating officer at Meta, Facebook's parent company, and has announced her resignation after 14 years.

Ms. Sandberg posted on Facebook that she was leaving, stating that she wanted to continue her work with her foundation and philanthropic efforts in the future.

She is leaving because Meta is facing a slowdown of advertising sales and increased competition from TikTok.

Ms. Sandberg is a prominent woman in the tech industry.

"When I accepted this job in 2008 I hoped that I would remain in this position for five years," Ms Sandberg wrote. She is a strong second-in command at the company. "Fourteen Years later, it's time to start writing the next chapter in my life."

Javier Olivan (currently Meta's chief development officer) will replace Ms Sandberg when she leaves.

Ms. Sandberg's husband, who died unexpectedly in 2015, will be getting remarried this summer. She stated that she would leave the company in the fall, but that she would still be on the board.

Meta shares fell 4% after her announcement.

Ms. Sandberg joined Facebook in the early days of Facebook as a small company run by Mark Zuckerberg (a 23-year-old Harvard dropout). She is a Google veteran and helped to transform the advertising business into a profit machine as Google grew to include Messenger, WhatsApp, Instagram, and WhatsApp.

The company had more than $117bn in revenues last year and reported that more than 2.8 million people worldwide used its app daily.

She was a worldwide celebrity for the books she wrote, such as Lean in: Women, Work, & the Will to Lead - which her description called a "sortof feminist manifesto".

Her star power was eroded when the company was criticised for handling personal data related to Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm, and targeted ads. It also faced criticism for moderating social media posts.

Ms. Sandberg was the original person responsible for Facebook's response. She wrote: "The debate about social media has changed beyond recognition depuis those early days."

It hasn't always been easy, but that is an understatement. It shouldn't be easy," she wrote. "The products that we create have a significant impact on the lives of people. We have to ensure they are safe and secure."

In his own post Mr Zuckerberg stated that Ms. Sandberg's departure was the "end" of an era, noting that it was unusual for a business partnership such as theirs to last this long.

He said, "Sheryl designed our ads business, hired top people, created our management culture and taught me how I run a business." She created millions of opportunities around the globe, and she is credited for much of Meta's success.

He stated that Mr Olivan's responsibilities will differ from those of Ms Sandberg. Mr Olivan will assume a more traditional chief operating officer position, which is more operationally focused and internalized.

Meta faces new challenges due to tighter social media regulations in countries and iPhone maker Apple changing its privacy rules. This will impact Meta's targeted advertising business.

The growth in Facebook users in key markets like the US has slowed down and the company has lost younger users due to competition such as TikTok.

Mr. Zuckerberg has been pushing for the company's investment in virtual and augment reality platforms. He sees this as the key to the firm’s next phase. In honor of the shift towards the "metaverse", he renamed Meta last year.

Debra Aho Williamson, principal analyst at Insider, said that Ms. Sandberg had "a tremendous impact on Facebook, Meta and the wider business world."

She said that she helped Facebook create a world-class advertising platform and developed ground-breaking ads formats. This enabled Facebook to be the second largest digital advertisement company in the world after Google.

"But, Facebook faced many scandals under her leadership, including the 2016 election and the Cambridge Analytica privacy crisis in 2018. The Capitol riots, which took place following the 2020 election. Meta will experience a slowdown of user growth and ad revenues in 2022. This is putting a strain on the business foundation upon which the company was founded.

"The company must find a new direction, and maybe this was the right time for Sandberg's departure."

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