LinkedIn co-founder describes young Mark Zuckerberg's awkward silences that lasted for minutes - and why he invested in Facebook anyway

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LinkedIn co-founder describes young Mark Zuckerberg's awkward silences that lasted for minutes - and why he invested in Facebook anyway
Mark Zuckerberg, pictured at age 23, in Facebook's office in Palo Alto on Monday, Feb. 5, 2007. Paul Sakuma/AP
  • Linkedin co-founder Reid Hoffman told Bloomberg Wednesday why he was an early investor in Facebook.
  • He described young Zuckerberg's quiet demeanor that led to "minutes-long pauses in the conversation."
  • Hoffman invested anyway, citing Facebook's on-campus usage curve as the primary driver.

Linkedin co-founder Reid Hoffman said young Mark Zuckerberg had a quiet demeanor that led to "minutes-long pauses in conversation" on Bloomberg's The David Rubenstein Show this Wednesday.

He added that the young Facebook CEO was "very quiet" but he "could see that he was very smart."

Hoffman said he ultimately became an early investor in Facebook due to the social network's usage curve after it first launched on Harvard's campus.

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"In six weeks, 80% of the campus was using it six times or more per day," he told Bloomberg.

Zuckerberg started Facebook as a 19-year-old computer science and psychology student at Harvard. According to Hoffman, he displayed the characteristics of "highly successful software entrepreneurs," even at such a young age.

"Mark obviously had a bunch of interesting ... knowledge and attributes," Hoffman said on the show.

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Now 37 years old, Mark Zuckerberg is one of the last remaining Big Tech founder still running his company. The founding entrepreneurs of Google, Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft have all passed along the reins to new management, though Jack Dorsey returned in recent years to run Twitter's day to day.

From virtual reality meetings to building the metaverse, Zuckerberg is trying hard to keep his company's entrepreneurial spirit alive in the face of antitrust and misinformation backlash.

"The trajectory that Facebook was on was really interesting," Hoffman concluded at the end of the show.

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