CNBC

Goldman Sachs, Facebook and the IPO - 2012 It Is


It's official. Sort of.

According to a CNBC Report, Facebook is most likely having its IPO in the first quarter of 2012. And Goldman Sachs will be leading the way.

Not, necessarily, that Facebook particularly wants it to happen then. It's that it's going to have to - because of 'the 500 rule.'

You see, by law - the 1934 Securities and Exchange Act, to be specific - when a company has 500 investors, they can't be considered private any longer. By law, they're considered public. And that means an IPO.

Nice for Facebook, though, its valuation is coming in at over $100 billion.  Especially since, not that long ago, its valuation was only $75 billion.

Which brings us back to Goldman Sachs.  Because the game changed - and the Facebook valuation skyrocketed - when Goldman established a fund, first, of $375 million of its own and its clients' money to invest in Facebook and then an additional Facebook investment fund of $1.5 billion.  But that was for its foreign investment clients only.

Because of that pesky 500 rule...which they tried to get around by saying that with all the investors being foreign, the fund, itself, could be considered one investor!

You gotta love Goldman.   And Facebook.  They're quite the pair.

Too bad "friending" Facebook won't give you the inside track for "friends and family" share access for the IPO.  Now that would be a "Like" that everyone would want!


(Originally published on Technorati.)

Staying on Message

Executives who have to face the fire on programs such as CNBC's "Squawk Box" are well trained to stay on message.  That's why they're always worth watching.

Think of it like a free post-doc in how to get your point across in difficult circumstances...no matter what anyone throws at you.

So, whether it's in preparation for your first media appearance or you're going in front of your friendly local VC, C-level executive or Board members - you want to know what your message is and then keep to it.  Through thick and thin.

An excellent example was when Cisco's CEO, John Chambers faced the CNBC fire to give a very different perspective than the one the analysts had chosen to adopt.  Even though, as he was speaking, his company's share value had taken a 12% drop in morning trade.

His key message throughout:  We control our own destiny.

By stating and re-stating that - supported by all sorts of data for all the different markets in which Cisco plays - his purpose was to allay fears that market forces would drive the company's valuation and performance down further.  And then further.

I don't know if it will work over the long term.  After all, it has most recently resulted in the shut-down of the Flip video camera and laying off of 550 people.  But it is a great example of the messaging art.

The resource below will get you to the All Things Digital page with the video.

Resource


John Chambers Plays Defense as Cisco's Shares Tumble (ATD)