Meta Platforms is slowing the growth of its workforce as the Facebook parent looks to rein in costs, the company said on Wednesday. "We regularly re-evaluate our talent pipeline according to our business needs and in light of the expense guidance given for this earnings period, we are slowing its growth accordingly," a Meta spokesperson said in an e-mailed statement.
Business Insider, citing an internal note to employees, reported that the company was lowering hiring targets and had temporarily stopped hiring for the remainder of the year.
Meta Platforms last week recorded its slowest revenue growth in a decade, with Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg also saying the company would scale back costs.
Meanwhile, Meta Platforms on Wednesday gave an early glimpse of its first physical store, which features a floor-to-ceiling screen for showing off games on its virtual reality headsets and rooms for testing video calling devices.
The store, set to open on May 9, is located at the main campus for Meta's Reality Labs unit, in the Silicon Valley town of Burlingame, California. The unit is developing the hardware products the company aims to sell there, including Ray-Ban smart glasses, Portal video-calling devices and Oculus VR headsets.
In the meantime, with growth slowing and the company still almost entirely reliant on digital ads for revenue, Meta is cutting back on some of its long-term investments.
In addition to promoting its hardware devices to consumers, Meta is increasingly pitching them to businesses. It gave a demonstration at the store of conference calls that can feature a mix of virtual reality avatars and traditional video calling.
The company is experimenting with augmented reality technology that would enable users to join conferences as avatars via Portal, without donning headsets, said Micah Collins, a director of product management working on the enterprise tools.
Collins acknowledged the enterprise metaverse business is nascent, and a spokesperson said most usage of Horizon Workrooms, the VR conferencing technology, comes from inside Meta.
Still, Collins said, the company senses opportunity.
Although many products are still very early stage and known in their consumer context, "there's enough there that's giving us a lot of confidence to attack the space," he said.
© Thomson Reuters 2022