Posted August 24, 2009 10:07 am by with 4 comments

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Facebook IconWhile we continue to slog our way through the economy (is it getting better, staying the same or worse?) there are a few companies that are defying the general downward trends. Apple’s iPhone has let them weather the storm quite nicely. Apparently, Facebook is doing quite fine as well. In fact, they appear to be in a position to take full advantage of the talent pool that exists in the current marketplace (and one would suspect have some serious salary leverage as well). reports that Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg isn’t too concerned about how people are struggling. He’s just happy he’s on the right end of this economy

Facebook Inc. plans to expand its staff by as much as 50 percent this year as it benefits from a surplus of engineers amid the recession, Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg said.

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

While it’s pretty easy to see the business upside for Facebook since so many talented people are being let go during this excuse for cutting staff recession there is likely to be a better way to say it. Can’t you feel the compassion for the down-trodden? Well, considering the source, forget I even mentioned that.

Zuckerberg’s pitch internally is that the Facebook crowd must keep the lean and mean look in order to keep costs under control and to hit the lofty revenue numbers ($500 million this year) that have been set.

“The thing I want to remind people of is we’re way closer to the beginning than the end,” Zuckerberg said in the Aug. 20 interview. “A lot of times buildings can be a signal that you’ve made it. I would rather that our building feel much more like a very large garage.”

Gotta love the HP feel to his approach. Facebook is certainly one of the ones looking better than most during this current day and age. Keeping everything on the cheap makes for good press for sure. One wonders, though, if there going to be the revenue projected for the company and where will it come from as the advertising strength of social networks is still a largely untested area. As it always is, this will be interesting to follow as everyone feels their way through new models and markets with literally no history to look back to for guidance.