initial public offerings (IPOs) trading on American exchanges

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Facebook picks Nasdaq for IPO

The social network will list its shares under the ticker symbol FB on Nasdaq, according to people with knowledge of the matter, who demanded anonymity because the discussions were private.

It’s a significant coup for the exchange, which has been embroiled in a fierce battle with the New York Stock Exchange for the darlings of Silicon Valley. While big technology companies, like Apple and Google, have traditionally flocked to Nasdaq, the N.Y.S.E. has aggressively courted the new crop of Internet companies over the last year, nabbing notable offerings like LinkedIn and Pandora Media.

For Nasdaq, Facebook is not just any listing. With more than 800 million users and $3.7 billion in revenue, Facebook has come to dominate the social media industry.

The company is widely expected to go public next month and is on track to be the largest offering since Google’s debut in 2004. The I.P.O. could value the sprawling social network as high as $100 billion, people close to the company have said. Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan and Goldman Sachs are leading the I.P.O.

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