Facebook Officially Files For IPO; World Continues To Turn

Facebook, the startup website that the kid from Squid & the Whale was accused of stealing from those twins in that pistachio commercial (or at least that’s what I learned from fast-forwarding through The Social Network), is finally set to join the ranks of the publicly traded. The company has filed papers for its initial public offering, which is expected to make a bunch of people really, really rich and maybe, just maybe, make us all love one another again.

The documents, in which Facebook sets a very humble preliminary goal of $5 billion, were filed earlier today with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The actual pricing of the stock or date it will be tossed into the water like so much bloody chum is yet to be announced, though it’s all expected to happen in May.

Facebook claims 845 million users (though we expect that a good chunk of those are duplicates used by Zynga addicts to game the Farmville system) and annual revenue of $3.7 billion.

Morgan Stanley will be the lead bank for the IPO, so hat’s off to them for landing what’s expected to be somewhere around $500 million in fees from the offering.

Facebook files for IPO; hopes to raise $5 billion [LA Times]

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  1. Arctic Snowbot says:

    So long, and thanks for all the fish!

  2. bhurt544 says:

    I feel for the people who buy and hold or buy in at peak thinking they are getting a good deal. Look at the rise and fall of MySpace for an example. The next better thing will come along and there is nothing to stop Facebook from bleeding to death like AOL.

    • eyesack is the boss of the DEFAMATION ZONE says:

      I’m buying at open, selling at close. Groupon was up 31% on its first day. Google famously was up 436% on its first day.
      People will keep on buying, like morons. The stock will be higher a couple weeks out, probably, than at the end of day 1. But I’m anticipating close to zero risk here.

      • Cerne says:

        Sometimes they stay up. Google was $580 today.

      • wrjohnston91283 says:

        You need to keep in mind that many times the IPO price isn’t available to the general market. Take Dunkin’ Brands for instance. The IPO price was $19. It closed the first day of trading around $27. However, it started trading at $25; which means that is the price anyone as a general investor would get on the open market. The $19/share was only available to investors with accounts/links at the underwriting banks. The IPO price is generally only available if the offering is undersubscibed, which means that they are selling more stock than they have buyers for; and generally the price falls on these deals.

  3. RandomHookup says:

    I’m sure the Rolls Royce dealers and the high end real estate brokers in the Valley are calculating when the Facebook lock-up period will end. From IPO to then, expect no work to get done at FB HQ.

    • bluline says:

      One network news report I just saw said Zuckerberg’s personal net worth could be $28 billion after this IPO. Like the size of the universe, I find that level of personal wealth impossible to comprehend.

  4. gman863 says:

    An IPO at the same time Facebook is jacking up the number of ads and imposing the mandatory “timeline” feature?

    Anyone who buys it is a fool. Facebook has jumped the shark; its stock will eventually tank like 90% of the other “.com” ovverings over the past two decades.

    • Crymansqua says:

      850 million users? I doubt it’s going to up and fail tomorrow.

    • humphrmi says:

      Unlike most of the .com stocks of the last decade, Facebook made a profit last year – $1 billion, actually, at a 33% margin. Meaning for every $1 they bring in, 33 cents of that is profit. That’s a lot better than most blue chips these days.

      Facebook stock won’t tank just because you don’t like the website. It will only tank if they stop making money. And despite all the recent negatives, every indication is that they’ll only be making more money next year.

      • bbf says:

        @humphrmi
        So you say Facebook made 1 billion dollars in 2011 with a 33% margin, so they *deserve* a $75 – $100 billion valuation. Better margin than blue chips you say… well, that’s all and well if facebook was a blue chip company, but it’s not, it’s an internet company, it’s unfair to compare it blue chip companies that actually have large fixed costs and lots of hard assets.
        Let’s crunch the numbers using another ad revenue based company, Google.
        In 2011, Google made 9.7 billion dollars with a 26% margin. So with 9% of Google’s profits, but with a much larger margin, facebook should be valued at 50% of Google’s market cap? I would say “no” it shouldn’t be valued that high.

        • humphrmi says:

          Boy I love (/s) commenters here who like to put words in other commenters, well, comments.

          Where did I mention anything about valuation? I was responding to gman863′s proposal that Facebook stock should tank because they’ve made changes to the webpage, quite likely very profitable changes, that he or she doesn’t like.

          My point, which you apparently missed, is that a stock’s success is based on profits, margins, etc. not whether you like their website or not.

          • bbf says:

            So you are saying that they *are* going to tank, you just want to argue the semantics about why. Okay…

            • BrienBear Thinks Stupidity Defies Logic says:

              And you’re just being obtuse to be obtuse. He didn’t say whether it will tank or not.

              reading comprehension FTW…

  5. gman863 says:

    Anyone who buys the stock is an idiot. Between jacking up the number of ads per page and forcing users into the “timeline” mode, they’ve jumped the shark.

  6. Gman says:

    In other “i am just making this up but seems to be at least leading to this” news – internet scientists have moved the Bubble Clock’s “virtual boy with a giant pin” to 1.5″ from the internet bubble.

  7. hansolo247 says:

    The hate for this IPO seems to be pretty substantial.

    I doubt many insiders are lining up…me thinks this is getting sold to our 401K fund managers as we speak.

    I wonder if petitions could be started to send to major funds asking them NOT to buy?

  8. ancientone567 says:

    LOL I only have 1 profile and it’s fake.

  9. Thaddeus says:

    Step 1. Get everyone to give you all their personal info
    Step 2. Build a huge user base
    Step 3: ???????
    Step 4: PROFIT!

    OH MY GOD, FACEBOOK FIGURED OUT STEP 3!

    I just see this ending up a huge mess in a few years. Serious investors are going to want a big return and they are going to try and get a hand in the decision making and that will inevitably mess things up. You know, more so than now.

  10. silyolpooh says:

    They know that once they’re a publicly traded company they can’t just go around changing crap and pissing off all their consumers, right? Funny thing about shareholders: they like happy customers.

    • YouDidWhatNow? says:

      Where did you get that idea? Shareholders care about dividends and stock prices – anything else is irrelevant.

    • Buckus says:

      Rule #1: If you’re not paying for a product, YOU are the product. Facebook is selling YOU, you’re not Facebook’s customer, their advertisers are.

    • pop top says:

      “Funny thing about shareholders: they like happy customers.”

      Where did you get that idea?

  11. mingtae says:

    This is a great stock because everyone over the age of 30 thinks it is the trendy thing to have these days. Meanwhile, Facebook is having a hard time holding on to its under 21 group.

  12. Extended-Warranty says:

    This stock will be a great buy. I believe they have only begun to scrape the surface on social networking. Just because MySpace and AOL failed, doesn’t mean they will.

  13. Shorebreak says:

    Silicon Valley expects this will result in the recreation of a boom on the level of the ‘Dot-Com’ era.

    http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_19862712

  14. u1itn0w2day says:

    I can proudly say I do not have a facebook account nor do I want one. I think the IPO is a good idea if for no other reason they’ll have to disclosure more information than they’re currently doing. It makes them a little more accountable. I’m surprised they want to go public for that reason alone. But going public offers the chance of even mo money and an official entry into documented history. YAWN

  15. AngryK9 says:

    The world continues to turn, and at this very moment, I am unable to access Facebook at all.

  16. verdegrrl says:

    I think I’ll leave this here for folks to ponder:

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/facebook-ipo-because-time-its-different

    Important line:

    “Looking at eight of the larger and more media-promoted IPOs of the last year or two (GRPN, ZNGA, LNKD, P, YOKU, DANG, AWAY, and FFN) we find, aside from the potential for an average 50% pop from the lucky allocation / untradable IPO price, the man in the street that bought the IPO in the market on Day 1 now faces an average loss of 54%”