Facebook’s Initial Public Offering (IPO), the stock market launch of its shares, is set to take place on Friday 18th May. A roadshow, in which CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg will tour the US promoting the company, will last one to two weeks before the IPO date. His performance could make a big difference to how the IPO shares are received by the markets and how high they can price the new shares.
Wall Street were not so pleased when Mr Zuckerberg missed an analysts meeting in March, however now it’s so close to pay day he appears to have wisely decided to present himself at these IPO roadshows. Facebook should be able to raise between $5 billion and $10 billion from the IPO valuing the company as a whole in the region of $100 billion.
What the Facebook roadshow may look like
It’s important to note that Mr Zuckerberg will retain control of the company even after the floatation by retaining a majority of voting shares, something investors aren’t that keen about. However he has been behind the success of Facebook so far so his business instincts may pay off better in the long run than a committee of investors. Pouring a little cold water on the IPO, there was a blip in the company’s performance last quarter. Financially focussed Forbes say they would prefer Facebook to wait for another quarter results before the IPO.
If all goes to plan this will be biggest Silicon Valley IPO ever. It’s the biggest IPO since Google offered its shares to the market according to research company IPO Boutique’s Scott Sweet "I have not seen as broad-based interest in an IPO since Google. Investor demand is immense; I expect a roadshow that will rival all roadshows where investors will be turned away at the door." he told Reuters news agency.