March 4, 2011
Palo Alto, Calif. (RPRN) 03/04/11 — The rapid ascent remains unbroken, it seems. Earlier this year – and this year is still in its infancy – Facebook attained a $50 billion implied valuation thanks to an investment by Goldman Sachs. Only weeks later, the social media giant was looking to help employees move $1 billion in privately held stock at a valuation 20 percent higher ($60 billion). Now, a deal that is nearing completion could add another 8 percent to the company that has yet to be traded publicly. According to a report by CNBC, investment firm General Atlantic, which has $17 billion in assets under management, is poised to take a small stake in the company at a $65 billion implied valuation.
The stake would amount to only 0.1 percent, approximately 2.5 million shares. Here’s the twist: this is the block of shares Facebook was hoping to sell at the $60 billion valuation. So, the price has essentially gone up since the announcement. At the $65 billion level, this represents a growth in value of 30 percent in only a month and a half. The deal isn’t closed yet, though, as it has to be approved by Facebook. Needless to say, this is the sort of payday employees hope for when a company actually goes public. In this case, they get to benefit before the big day … as long as Zuck’s crew signs off on it.
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