Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Ushers in Historic IPO
(MENLO PARK, Calif.) -- After some technical hiccups, trading in Facebook's blockbuster IPO officially opened to an eager public Friday at about $42 a share, up 11 percent from its offer price of $38 a share.
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and founder of Facebook, and COO Sheryl Sandberg gathered with a throng of cheering employees at the company headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif., to ring the Nasdaq's opening bell at 9:30 a.m. eastern time ahead of the social media network's long-awaited IPO.
Trading of the company's shares, designated with the ticker symbol, "FB," was scheduled to begin around 10:45 a.m. eastern time but began almost an hour later because Facebook's underwriter, Morgan Stanley, was reportedly having trouble changing orders.
With a large monitor and stage set up outdoors, instead of visiting Nasdaq's New York exchange, hundreds of employees gathered early Friday morning in California. Many of them had participated in Facebook's "hackathon," a company tradition described as an overnight sleepover that encourages employees to work on anything but their normal work duties.
Not to abandon Wall Street completely, Facebook CFO David Ebersman was at the Nasdaq in New York City during the opening bell.
On Thursday night, Facebook priced its initial public offering at $38 a share, raising $16 billion and valuing the company at $104 billion. The company is offering 421.2 million shares of common A-class stock, which includes 180 million new shares sold by the company and 241.2 million shares sold by existing shareholders.
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