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Facebook India User Base Touches 112M. But, Profits Decline

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Facebook is not referred to as the king of all networking sites without a reason. Written off many a times because of increasing popularity of instant chat messaging apps, facing flak over privacy (or the lack of it) and drawing comparisons with networks like Tumblr, Instagram and Pinterest which are gaining popularity with the millennial and surfacing of newer ‘ad-free’ sites like Ello, Tsu and the like, the networking site continues to grow at a rate most of its rivals could only dream of touching some day!

The hugely popular site which has nearly 1.35 billion users across the world has touched 112 million user base in our country and thus become the second largest base for the Menlo Park, California located company outside its own shores.

The social site had confirmed touching the 100 million user landmark in India only a few months back (April 2014, to be precise) and has thus gone on to add 12 million more users over the last eight months. It gets 52 million daily active users (DAUs) from India and 99 million monthly active users (MAUs) from this huge user base.

Facebook India Stats

Globally, the DAUs  of the site has touched 864 million. 45 million of the DAUs in India sign in to the site through their mobile devices, a logical consequence of a large percentage of youth making up our population, rapid internet penetration and cheaper entry level smartphones becoming ubiquitous.

“We have seen tremendous growth from across regions. There is still a huge market opportunity to tap into. We are engaging actively with our users and partners (brands, advertisers etc) on how can their experience on the platform be enhanced further,” Facebook India Managing Director Kirthiga Reddy told PTI.

“Social media is the first place this group would turn to share a photo of themselves (41 per cent), a funny video or joke (37 per cent), an interesting news article (32 per cent) and a random observation (24 per cent) – ranking ahead of face-to-face, text, email and other means of communications,” she said.

Ms Reddy also referred to the findings of a recent study which had mentioned that the Indians are the most addicted to their smartphone devices globally. That study had pointed out that 77% of smartphone users in the 13-24 age group had said that they do not leave/ will not leave their homes without their handheld devices while an astounding 63% were willing to give up their TV over their phones.

Fear of Being Offline (FOBO), according to the study, was one of the major concerns of the respondents as they made it clear that it was extremely important for them to be connected to the internet all/ most of the time.

Such is the importance of this site that Kirthiga Reddy, the Indian MD of the site, was named as one of the eight most influential business women in India only a few days back.

For a company which had only 8 million users in our country when they launched their operations in India in 2010, it has come a long way indeed.

What needs to be pointed out here is that inspite of the hype created by their ever expanding user base, it is not contributing much towards the Zuckerberg owned company’s profits.

The turnover of the Indian leg of the company went up from Rs 9.6 crore in 2012-13 to Rs 97.65 crore in the FY 2013-14, but the net profits came down from Rs 9.6 crore reported in FY13. The huge user base of the company in India has not been monetized well enough.

All the same, other networking sites like Twitter and LinkedIn are also not earning hugely from this part of the world. Is that some consolation for the social titan?

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