San Francisco: Facebook has approved the creation of 5.7 billion new shares of Class C stock that will keep its CEO Mark Zuckerberg in control as long as he is associated with the social networking giant.
The decision, taken at its annual shareholders’ meeting on Monday, will help Zuckerberg keep voting control and allow him and his wife Dr Priscilla Chan to boost philanthropic activities without diluting the voting control, venturebeat.com reported.
“I am planning on running the company for a very long time,” Zuckerberg told the members during the question and answer session of the meeting.
The company also re-elected its board of directors, including investors Marc Andreessen and Peter Thiel.
According to a Fortune report, the move gives current shareholders a 3 for 1 stock split.
“It means for every share of Class A or B stock an investor owns, Facebook will offer them two Class C shares as a one-time dividend. Class C stock does not come with shareholder voting power,” the report added.
In December, Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan pledged to donate 99 per cent of their Facebook shares — about $45 billion — to advance human potential and promote equality for children.
Declaring the “Chan Zuckerberg Initiative” as they welcomed their first girl child Maxima Chan Zuckerberg or “Max”, the couple said they have created a new foundation that would initially focus on “personalised learning, curing disease, connecting people and building strong communities.”
“We will give 99% of our Facebook shares during our lives to advance this mission. We know this is a small contribution compared to all the resources and talents of those already working on these issues. But we want to do what we can, working alongside many others,” the couple wrote in a post.
Zuckerberg owns about four million of Class A shares in Facebook and approximately 419 million Class B shares.
Each Class B share is worth 10 votes apiece which gives Zuckerberg majority voting power and control over Facebook’s strategic direction.
Facebook currently has over 1.6 billion monthly active users.