Meta is “winding down” its digital collectibles – NFTs – on Facebook and Instagram, as announced by Meta’s Head of Commerce and Financial Technologies Stephane Kasriel in a Twitter thread on Monday.
The product was announced less than a year ago for testing on Facebook and Instagram, with expansions into 100 countries in July last year in a push for new revenue streams, despite the appetite around digital collectibles slowing massively in the last 12 months.
The decision comes as Meta has announced 10,000 layoffs and restructuring plans as it is ‘flattening the organisation’ and ‘letting go of low priority projects’, throwing questions as to if Meta is so keen on the metaverse or if there’s a redirection inbound again.
“Let me be clear,” said Kasriel in the post. “Creating opportunities for creators and businesses to connect with their fans and monetize remains a priority, and we're going to focus on areas where we can make impact at scale, such as messaging and monetization opps for Reels.”
Along with this, the plan is to “continue investing in fintech tools” like Meta Pay.
Meta said it will continue to “support creators, people, and businesses on our apps, both today and in the metaverse” suggesting that plans for the metaverse are to be seen in the future, most likely after the dust has settled on the restructuring plans.
The NFT abandonment is one of a few casualties suggested by CEO Mark Zuckerberg in his drive to make 2023 the “year of efficiency” after major layoffs last year of 11,000 employees and a 1% drop in revenue.
Some product news: across the company, we're looking closely at what we prioritize to increase our focus. We’re winding down digital collectibles (NFTs) for now to focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses. [1/5]— Stephane Kasriel (@skasriel) March 13, 2023