Mobile payments is a hot space, so when Facebook announced that PayPal’s president would leave that company to come run its Messenger product in May, some people assumed that meant Facebook was diving in.
Not true, Mark Zuckeberg explained after he was asked why “payments guy” David Marcus is running Messenger.
“David was pretty successful [building PayPal],” Zuckerberg said, defending Marcus as a good hire. “There will be some overlap between Messenger and payments and it will be part of what will help drive overall success … there’s so much groundwork we need to do so people are communicating [better] … We have a lot of work to do and we could do the cheap and easy approach and put ads in and payments, but we’re not going to … We’re going to do it over multiple years.”
Zuckerberg then said that analysts were wrong if they were thinking that Marcus’s arrival meant they should try to put payments revenue in their financial estimates for Facebook: “Get that out of your models.”
The next question was on Facebook’s WhatsApp acquisition, and Zuckerberg appeared to briefly lose his patience. “The deal hasn’t closed. We have nothing to say.”