Facebook celebrates its eighth birthday with its imminent entry onto the Stock Market
It’s the eighth birthday of the social network that is still revolutionising the World 2.0. It has come a long way from Mark Zuckerberg’s dorm room to the Stock Exchange.
On February 4, 2004, Mark Zuckerberg launched a new social platform called “The Facebook”. Eight years after its appearance, the tool that was born as an exclusive site for University of Harvard students is the absolute queen of online sociability and is going to enter on the Stock Market with an initial public offer that could reach $100 billion.
Facebook: A little bit of history.
Facebook was created as an internal website for Harvard students. In March 2004, due to its success, it was expanded to other universities. In 2005 its creators decided to drop the “The” and acquired the user domain for $200,000. The same year it passed the 11 million user mark, and in 2006 it was opened to the public, expanding beyond the United States students’ web.
Eight years after its foundation, the company now has 800 million users and it predicts that it will pass the one billion mark in August. There are those that claim that the number of accounts doesn’t necessarily correspond to the number of active users. All the same, according to published recently data by Cnet, 483 million users log in to Facebook every day. This maintains the social network in the absolute and unarguable leading position ahead of other platforms such as Twitter and LinkedIn. What’s more, last year the platform doubled its income from publicity which reached $3.7 billion and represent profits for the company of more than a billion dollars. In this way, it seems to have silenced those who doubted Facebook’s commercial potential and assured that the company wouldn’t be capable of generating profit.
The Stock market, the next big step
In this context, everything seems to be ready for Facebook’s imminent flotation on the Stock Exchange. According to analysts, the capitalisation of the world’s biggest social network, surely the leading player in the current communication revolution, could be worth $100 billion. What’s more, the company could make $5 billion from its initial public offer. This would easily overtake the record for the biggest ever technology industry IPO, currently held by Google with the $190 billion that it made when it was floated on the Stock Exchange in 2004.
But, of course, the road ahead is not entirely a bed of roses for Facebook. The flotation means an increase in the number of shareholders, who will undoubtedly push for an increase in company profits so that they can turn their investments into profits. Therefore, it is probable that the social network’s current success will not be enough to satisfy those who invest their money in the company. Thus it remains to be seen whether, when faced with the challenge of continuing to promote its growth and, fundamentally, its profitability, it will be able to respond to the demands of the market. The big question that everyone is asking at the moment is, will it be able to respond to the challenge?