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Facebook may expand staff by 50 percent |

Facebook may expand staff by 50 percent

| Tuesday, August 25, 2009 12:00 a.m

Facebook Inc. may expand its staff by 40 percent to 50 percent this year as it benefits from a surplus of engineers amid the recession, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said.

“No one else has been hiring,” Zuckerberg, 25, said. “It’s been a great environment for us because the economy has helped out.”

The world’s most popular social-networking Web site, which has 1,000 employees, will build its workforce at a slower pace than typical startups, Zuckerberg said. Google Inc., the most-used Internet search engine, almost doubled its staff annually in the three years through 2005, a year after it went public.

In May, Facebook moved into a decades-old building in Palo Alto, Calif., that he calls “the bunker” — with unfinished cement floors and fading stickers on the front door.

Facebook, which has grown to more than 250 million users, is still proving itself to potential advertisers. An IDC survey last year found users of social-networking sites were less likely than other Web users to click on ads or buy the item if they did.

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