Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) launching a financial service business is one of the things Kevin O’Leary is hoping that the social media giant will do, he revealed in an interview with CNBC.
The comment comes as David Marcus was hired by the world’s largest social networking site and sparked talk that the company is developing a financial service offering that will rival eBay Inc’s (NASDAQ:EBAY) PayPal. Marcus was the president of PayPal.
Talking about the possible launch of such a service by Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), the “Shark Tank” investor said:
“I certainly hope so. It would be one of the most lucrative businesses [Facebook] could launch. That’s the anticipation. That’s why the Street likes this. [The launch of a payment service] is the assumption we’re all making. You’ve got a billion users and everybody buys something every day. The opportunity to provide them some form of financial infrastructure that you have a click charge on is an amazing opportunity. That might even get me to buy Facebook stock when it pays a dividend, of course.”
CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin then went on to ask Kayla Tausche whether the rumor that Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is launching a payment system makes sense. Kayla answered that it’s probably accurate citing news in April that the social network applied for a license to be a payment processor in Europe. She noted, however, that the Central Bank of Ireland told her that the social network has not been given a license yet.
This does lead to the question, Tausche continued, of whether Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) needs an experienced executive in the financial services space or whether they already have enough experience in-house. Tausche said that she thinks hiring Marcus was a genius move by the social network.
Jon Fortt added in the discussion that he thinks PayPal is in trouble. He told the CNBC team that the fact Marcus said he is leaving because he likes launching new products is a bad sign for the company. He noted that the executive was in the process of making PayPal lean within the last few years and that the executive’s remarks demonstrate that this has not gone well.
Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) is also reported to be launching a product this Monday which will compete with PayPal.
Watch the video of the discussion below.
Louis Bacon’s Moore Global Investments is an investor in Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) with a reported stake of 1,026,050 shares as of the end of March. That stake was valued at about $61.81 million. Another investor is Brian Ashford-Russell’s and Tim Woolley’s Polar Capital which reported 1,026,017 shares in the company by the end of the first quarter.