Facebook today set the price range for its initial public offering at $28 to $35 per share, which would lead the company to raise between $5 billion and $6.3 billion, at a valuation up to $96 billion, according to an updated S-1 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
This would make Facebook’s the largest IPO of any tech company. Google was valued at $23 billion went it went public in 2004. Facebook estimates net proceeds of about $5.6 billion, assuming an initial public offering price of $31.50 per share, –the midpoint of the price range — and after deducting underwriting discounts, commissions and estimated offering expenses.
Facebook says 180 million of the shares in its offering would come from the company itself. The remaining 157,415,352 shares being sold will come from founders, employees and investors. CEO Mark Zuckerberg will exercise stock options with respect to 60,000,000 shares of Class B common stock and will offer 30,200,000 of those shares as Class A common stock in the offering — worth about $1 billion before taxes.
According to Fortune, it is unusual that Facebook set such a wide range for its filing. Most prospective issuers usually only use a $3 spread, it says. Still, the price is lower than some might have expected considering Facebook shares went for $44.10 on secondary exchange SharesPost in March. The social network could still adjust its price before the actual offering based on demand it sees during the investor roadshow.
Facebook also released its retail roadshow video here. The company will begin its in-person roadshow next week, and without any delays, Facebook should begin trading on the Nasdaq under the symbol FB on May 18.