Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) Free Internet Plan in India Should Make the Company Millions if Not Billions of Dollars

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While, Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) tries to convince India to allow them to move forward with their “Free Basics” free internet plan in the country, many people have questioned Mark Zuckerberg’s reason for pushing this idea so hard. Sure, free internet in a poverty stricken country would be amazing, especially in a country whose people are very smart when it comes to mathematics and computer skills. However, while Zuckerberg claims that his reasoning in trying to bring free internet to the entire country has little to do with generating revenues for Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) shareholders, I find that hard to believe.

Providing basic, and “very limited” internet to access to the world’s second most populated country could generate millions, if not billions, of dollars in revenue for Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB). The way “Free Basics” would work, as I understand it, is that Facebook would be the only social network accessible, and WhatsApp the only messeging app available to users. This means that over 1 billion people would now have a chance to join both Facebook and WhatsApp, and millions of Indian businesses would now be able to spend money to target this huge audience via advertising. While there isn’t a lot of money to go around in India, there is plenty for large businesses.

The idea for free internet in India is a sound one, especially from the point of view of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), but undoutedly it would be mutually beneficial to both Facebook shareholders and the Indian people.

Shareholders of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) should be hoping that this plan goes through. The stock decreased 0.60% or $0.59 during the last trading session, hitting $97.33. Approximately 36,135 shares traded hands. FB shares have risen 18.49% since June 5, 2015 and are currently uptrending. It has outperformed the S&P500 by 24.35%.

From a total of 33 analysts covering Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) stock, 32 rate it a “Buy”, 1 a “Sell”, and 0 a “Hold”. This means that 97% of the ratings are positive. The highest target price is $155.0 while the lowest target price is $88. The mean of all analyst targets is $122.65 which is 26.01% above today’s ($97.33) stock price. Facebook was the topic of 58 analyst reports since July 21, 2015 according to the firm StockzIntelligence Inc. Argus Research maintained shares on November 6 with a “Buy” rating. Morgan Stanley maintained shares with a”Overweight” rating and a $120 target share price in their report from a November 5. Canaccord Genuity maintained FB stock in a recent report from November 5 with a “Buy” rating. Credit Suisse maintained the rating on November 5. Credit Suisse has a “Outperform” rating and a $135 price target on shares. Finally, Jefferies maintained the stock with a “Buy” rating in a report they issued on a November 5.

The institutional sentiment increased to 1.73 in Q2 2015. It’s up 0.01, from 1.72 in 2015Q2. The ratio is positive, as 69 funds sold all their Facebook Inc shares they owned while 375 reduced their positions. 126 funds bought stakes while 643 increased their total positions. Institutions now own 1.55 billion shares which is 2.48% more than the previous share count of 1.51 billion in 2015Q2.

Millennium Tvp Management Co. Llc holds 52.76% of its total portfolio in Facebook Inc, equating to 639,552 shares. Parametric Risk Advisors Llc owns 7.97 million shares representing 46.51% of their total US portfolio. Moreover, Sc Us (Ttgp) Ltd. has 41.15% of their total portfolio invested in the company, equating to 1.04 million shares. The California-based Meritech Capital Associates Iii L.L.C. has a total of 37.81% of their portfolio invested in the stock. Duquesne Family Office Llc, a New York-based fund reported 4.09 million shares owned.

Since February 25, 2015, the stock had 0 insider purchases, and 45 sales for a total of $189.62 million in net activity. Athwal Jas sold 30,000 shares worth $3.06M. Stretch Colin sold 1,000 shares worth $98,710. Cox Christopher K sold 5,778 shares worth $561,622. Schroepfer Michael Todd sold 31,283 shares worth $3.00 million. The insider Fischer David B. sold 15,000 shares worth $1.43 million.

Facebook, Inc. is a social networking company. The company has a market cap of $275.25 billion. The Firm is engaged in developing products that enables users to connect and share through mobile devices and personal computers. It has 97.78 P/E ratio. It offers various services focused on people, marketers and developers.

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