Instagram chief Adam Mosseri is headed to London, with the long-time Meta product leader relocating to Europe for an extended period in the second half of the year.
Mosseri’s move won’t be permanent, but it will see Instagram’s top voice spend a big chunk of time in Meta’s UK office, where he’ll meet with local teams and officials to help boost the platform’s prospects in the EU region.
There are several reasons for the shift. For one, Meta now has more than 4,000 staff in London, largely focused on development, which includes a dedicated Instagram product team that’s focused on building and improving its services for creatorswhich has been a key focus for Mosseri in recent times.
Meta’s also concerned about growing calls to update the UKs Online Safety Bill, which could impact how social platforms like Instagram operate in the region – with specific proposals to offer improved verification tools for all adult users, to highlight digitally altered images more clearly, and to force platforms to better regulate potential harms.
But the last reason may be the most compelling – TikTok has already built a huge team in London, as the base of its European operations, where it’s been mapping out its coming push on in-app shopping, and integrating live-stream commerce into the App.
This far, that push has not gone to plan, with TikTok’s local team complaining of unreasonable work hours and expectations, which has forced TikTok to both scale back its commerce program and replace its local chief.
Maybe, Meta sees that as a key opportunity to get in now, before TikTok can re-group, and launch its own in-stream shopping push to counter TikTok’s EU growth strategy.
There are various reasons why having Mosseri on hand will be of benefit, with the immediate capacity to meet with local officials and leaders, as well as business partners, to help improve Instagram’s performance in the region.
And Meta needs to improve here. The company doesn’t break out Instagram’s user counts specifically, but Facebook has lost over 20 million users in Europe alone this year, as engagement continues to slide among EU audiences.
Much of that can be attributed to the invasion of Ukraine, and increased uncertainty in the Eastern bloc, which has had extended impacts for all regions. But even so, Mosseri’s move could also suggest that the downturn is not entirely linked back to the conflict, with Meta’s usage in the region fluctuating over the last two years.
Could having a local Meta representative from senior management lead to a better outcome for the company?
Of course, another potential reason for Mosseri’s re-assignment could be that Zuck just finished watching season two of Ted Lasso and had a lightning bolt moment.
For UK IG staff, maybe get this printed out now to place above the door to Mosseri’s office:
Jokes aside, there are various ways that Mosseri could contribute, on a range of elements, and it’ll be interesting to see how his change of location impacts Meta’s planning.
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