Facebook filed to raise $5bn as part of its initial public offering, one of the most eagerly anticipated to have ever emerged from Silicon Valley, according to sources.
The company on Wednesday filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for the offering set to take place this spring.
According to the International Financing Review five bookrunners have been selected to manage the IPO, including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, Barclays Capital and JP Morgan
It is unclear as yet how many shares Facebook intends to offer, or how much those shares will be valued, but sources close to the deal claim the total value will be worth around $5bn.
In it filing, the company reported 2011 yearly revenues of $3.71 and income for stockholders at $668m. The filing noted that Mark Zuckerberg continues to hold the majority of stock in the company and controls major decisions.
Following the registration process with the (SEC), the full ICO process could be finalised as early as May.
The initial deal reflects a decision by Facebook to test the waters of the stock market first before diving in.
Previously the full IPO was expected to be valued at between $75bn and $100bn.
Freeform Dynamics programme director, Tony Lock, said he was not surprised that Facebook has not gone for a full IPO just yet.
"In the last couple of years Facebook has raised funds on a number of occasions by different backers, so $5bn is likely to be enough to fund the next stage of business development," he told V3.
"There is no need for Facebook to go for the full blow at one time. And clearly, trying to raise the full amount would stress the economic markets at the moment."
He added that while the $5bn figure may appear low in light of previous speculation, it did not affect how the company may be valued by the market when the firm finally goes public.
"It's a sensible business decision and of course, just because it is a lower IPO, it does not change the value of the company going forward."
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