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Mark Zuckerberg’s goal for next 10 years: Help small businesses become large tech companies; here’s how

FE Online

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg perhaps have a resolution for the new decade not year: focusing on building the tools for small businesses to help them access the same kind of technology that otherwise only large enterprises had earlier. "Over the next decade, we hope to build the commerce and payments tools so that every small business has easy access to the same technology that previously only big companies have had," Mark Zuckerberg said in his new year post on Facebook on Friday sharing his expectations in the new decade. Small businesses are the top priorities for Facebook globally to help them expand and reach out to more customers.

The social network giant, which launched 'VC Brand Incubator Program' in June last year to tie-up with venture capital (VC) funds to help small and medium businesses (SMB) in their network grow, had partnered with SAIF Partner after tying up with Mumbai-based early-stage fund Sauce.VC and Bengaluru-based Fireside Ventures to offer skills and guidance to SMBs across sectors.

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"The area we’re most focused on is helping small businesses," said Zuckerberg claiming over 140 million small businesses reaching to their customers — mostly for free through its services. This includes entrepreneurs setting up an account on Facebook, Instagram, or WhatsApp, and then either communicating with people for free or buying ads to get their message out more broadly." Facebook has India as its largest market with 269 million users as of October 2019, as per Statista, followed by the US with 183 million.

With the commerce and payments tool if Facebook is able to make it, said Zuckerberg, anyone would be able to sell products through a storefront on Instagram, message and reach out to customers via Messenger, or send money at low cost through WhatsApp. "At the end of the day, a strong and stable economy comes from people succeeding broadly, and the best way to do that is to make it so small businesses can effectively become technology companies," he added. Facebook had said in April last year that around 15 lakh SMBs use their platform, reported by PTI, up from 9 lakh in June 2018.