Popular social network site Facebook, which hopes to raise at
least $5 billion in one of the world's most widely anticipated
IPOs, or initial public offerings of stock, is betting big on
India and Brazil.
Outlining its growth strategy in a filing made online with the
Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, Facebook said it
"continued to focus on growing its user base across all
geographies, including relatively less-penetrated, large markets
such as Brazil, Germany, India, Japan, Russia, and South Korea."
Noting that its active users had grown substantially in the past
several years, it said: "We experienced growth across different
geographies, with users in Brazil and India representing a key
source of growth."
As of December 31, 2011, it had 845 million active users, an
increase of 39 percent from the same date last year, including 161
million active users in the United States, an increase of 16
percent and 37 million active users in Brazil, an increase of 268
percent from the prior year.
"Additionally, we had 46 million MAUs in India as of December 31,
2011, an increase of 132 percent from the prior year," it said.
Facebook, which has one of its four regional support centres in
Hyderabad, India, noted that it competed with other, largely
regional, social networks that have strong positions in particular
countries, including Cyworld in South Korea, Mixi in Japan, Orkut
(owned by Google) in Brazil and India, and vKontakte in Russia.
"We intend to grow our user base by continuing our marketing and
user acquisition efforts and enhancing our products, including
mobile apps, in order to make Facebook more accessible and
useful," Facebook said.
"There are more than two billion global Internet users, according
to an industry source, and we aim to connect all of them" it said
noting it had achieved varying levels of penetration within the
population of Internet users in different countries with estimated
penetration rates of about 20-30 percent in Brazil, Germany, and
"There is a huge need and a huge opportunity to get everyone in
the world connected, to give everyone a voice and to help
transform society for the future," said Mark Zuckerberg,
Facebook's CEO, in a letter that accompanied the filing.
Zuckerberg, now 27, famously started Facebook when he was a
student at Harvard University in 2004.
(Arun Kumar can
be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)