Interesting Quotes from Facebook/DST Investment Conference Call

As reported this morning, Facebook announced that it has just closed a $200 million investment from Russian investment group Digital Sky Technologies. We just got off the conference call discussing the investment with Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, Yuri Milner, CEO of DST, Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, and Alexander Tamas, Partner at DST.

Here are some interesting quotes from the call. (Note: these may not all be verbatim because I was transcribing them in real time.)

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

– On Facebook’s financials and whether or not Facebook “needed” the investment:

“We’re open to interesting offers that are aligned with our mission and support what we’re trying to do. The financing will serve as a cash buffer to support our continued growth… We have had positive EBITDA for five quarters now, going on six. We expect to be cash flow positive in 2010… It’s nice to have the extra flexibility this cash will afford us.”

– On Facebook revenue models:

“One of the most interesting things about DST’s portfolio is that they’ve invested in several social networks, each with different monetization models. Facebook is still growing and experimenting with a number of different business lines, which we hope will grow and become big in the future… In the long run there will be multiple businesses. For the next few years, advertising will be the biggest part of our revenues. There are other areas that we think could be really interesting over time, like virtual gifts and user transactions.”

– On microtransactions:

“We’ve tested and are continuing to test a number of things with user payments. It’s not a large part of the business now, but we hope it can be in the future. It’s interesting that around the world, these products are creating a lot of value for users, and there’s a lot of different ways to monetize them.”

– On DST’s plans to purchase common stock from employees:

“We want employees to be focused on the long term. We announced a program last year to create some liquidity for employees, and it ended up not going through. So we are working with a partner now, but these are separate transactions and we are still working out the details – we will have more comments in the coming weeks and months.”

– On working with DST:

“DST is unique, they’re not the type of investor that you traditionally see at this stage… I’ve learned a lot from Yuri.”

DST CEO Yuri Milner:

– On the deal:

“Facebook is uniquely positioned to best take advantage of this worldwide trend. We are convinced that Facebook has the potential to be one of the most valuable Internet companies globally. We look forward to becoming long term partners of the team.”

– On social network monetization globally:

“We have a unique perspective on this investment because we see something that other people don’t see, because we see the monetization profiles of our other social networks.”

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