Zuckerberg: Facebook Will Make More Money on Mobile Than Desktop

Tuesday, 11 Sep 2012 | 6:02 PM ET
Mark Zuckerberg being interviewed at TechCrunch Disrupt.
Mark Zuckerberg being interviewed at TechCrunch Disrupt.

Facebook is a mobile company and it will make more money from its mobile platform than from its desktop website in the long-term, Mark Zuckerberg said Tuesday at a TechCrunch conference in San Francisco.

In his first interview since the company went public, Zuckerberg told Michael Arrington, the founder of TechCrunch, that he expects to make more money from mobile advertising than from desktop advertising because the ads are more integrated into the platform.

"What we are seeing already, even with the early mobile ads that we have, is that they are performing even better than the right hand column ads on desktop...There's a huge opportunity," Zuckerberg said.

Zuckerberg also noted that Facebook will not be making its own phone. "Clearly, that is the wrong strategy for us,” Zuckeberg said. He added that he thinks the biggest mistake Facebook made as a company was betting too much on HTML 5, which cost the company two years. "But we're coming out of that now," he said.

Facebook's stock has lost about half its value since its IPO, but the 28-year-old CEO has remained silent on the stock's decline until Tuesday.

"The performance of the stock has been disappointing," Zuckerberg said. "We care about our shareholders...we are going to do the things we think that add value over the long-term."

Zuckerberg: People Underestimate Facebook Mobile Strength
Speaking publicly for the first time since the IPO, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg responds to criticism that his company's stock has lost about half its value in less than 6 months.

While Zuckerberg expressed concern for his company's shareholders, he has made it clear in the past that the company's mission does not revolve around them.

"Going public is an important milestone in our history. But here’s the thing: our mission isn’t to be a public company. Our mission is to make the world more open and connected," Zuckerberg said in a speech before he rang the opening bell at the NASDAQ May 18, the day the company went public.

Zuckerberg reiterated Facebook's mission Tuesday when said "When you look back 10, 20 years from now, the legacy of this company should be that we've connected everyone in the world and that everyone can share all the stuff that they want."

Major Facebook investors Peter Thiel and Dustin Moskovitz have both recently sold large quantities of company stock, also stirring concern among investors.

Despite the criticism Facebook has faced regarding its stock price, though, Zuckerberg said it is common for his company to go through waves of varying public opinion.

"There are these times where everyone in the world thinks everything that we are doing is awesome and usually they are too optimistic when they think that...and then there are times when people are super pessimistic," Zuckerberg said. "Personally, I would rather be in the cycle where people underestimate us...I think a bunch of people are." (Read More: Facebook Fundamentals Are Strong: FB Adviser)

Wall Street personality Henry Blodget said he thinks Zuckerberg's comments Tuesday may have captured Wall Street's attention.

“He acknowledged that he’s disappointed in the stock’s decline. He said look, we care about shareholders - that’s something that shareholders want to hear,” Blodget said. (Read More: These Zuckerberg Comments Matter Most: Blodget )

Shares popped over 4 percent in after-hours trading.

Zynga shares also got a little bump after-hours. (Click here for after-hours Facebook and Zynga quotes)

email: tech@cnbc.com

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