Facebook has announced the pricing of its initial public offering (IPO) at $38 (£24) per share. The shares are set to begin trading on the NASDAQ Global Select Market today, as Mark Zuckerberg prepares to find out just how much his social networking phenomenon is worth on Wall Street.
The pricing comes in at the higher end of most expectations and has been met with scepticism by some analysts who still doubt the Facebook business model. But Nick Einhorn from IPO investment advisory firm Renaissance Capital said, "They could have gone public in 2009 at a much lower price. They waited as long as they could to go public, so it makes sense that it's a very large offering".
Others doubt Facebook's ability to grow in the mobile arena, with commentators suggesting the $1 billion Instagram purchase in April represented a panic buy at an inflated price, from a Zuckerberg scrambling to make his desktop creation more mobile-firendly.
But those who invested in Facebook in its early years will care little. Peter Thiel - the venture capitalist who sits on Facebook's board of directors having invested $500,000 in the company in 2004 - is selling nearly 17 million of his shares in the IPO, leaving him with a tidy $640 million.
Everyone has their own prediction for the future of Facebook, but with the bubble yet to burst, talk is cheap. That bubble is looking pretty robust though at a value of $104 billion.
Source: Chicago Tribune