The founder of Facebook emerged from a meeting with Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi here on Thursday, saying that governments and companies should all play a role in giving life to the "metaverse."
According to a company spokesman, Mark Zuckerberg, who now heads the social media giant Meta -- the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, said that his meeting "confirmed our collaboration with the Italian government in order to enhance the country's strengths in the technological and design sectors and to identify future investments", Xinhua news agency reported.
"We are pleased," the spokesman quoted Zuckerberg as saying, "to have been able to discuss the cultural, social and economic opportunities that the metaverse will bring to Italy, and we look forward to continuing our collaboration."
The "metaverse" is a new term coined to refer to a network of virtual worlds focused on social connections. In October 2021, Zuckerberg announced that Facebook was changing its name to Meta as a way to brand the company as a pioneer in this area.
Draghi's office did not issue a statement about his meeting with Zuckerberg, though an official confirmed that the meeting took place.
On Wednesday, Zuckerberg was in Milan to meet with Leonardo Del Vecchio, the founder and chairman of high-end Italian eyewear maker Luxottica. Media reports said the two discussed a joint venture focusing on new "smart glasses", though a Luxottica social media post only stated that the two entrepreneurs discussed "building the future and connecting fashion with technology."
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