Facebook Set To Get Its IPO Show On The Road

When it comes to its much-anticipated IPO, Facebook appears to be getting the show on the road, according to news reports.

The social media juggernaut is wrapping up its prospectus with regulators and may begin its roadshow -- a term for when the management of a company that plans to go public gives presentations to analysts and potential investors -- as soon as early next week, according to a report in The New York Times.

A spokesperson for Facebook declined to comment on the report.

The Times said Facebook’s roadshow should span New York, Boston, San Francisco, Chicago, Baltimore and possibly Los Angeles, and it’s expected to last eight to nine days. Based on that time frame, Facebook, the world’s largest social network, would be ready to go public near mid-May, the Times said.

However, as is the case with most IPOs, the timing of the actual offering could change based on the actions of regulators, market conditions or unexpected circumstances, the Times noted.

Facebook’s chief financial officer, David Ebersman, is expected to play a significant role in the roadshow, but it’s not clear how large a role Facebook’s Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg will play in the events, the newspaper said.

However, the news website AllThingsD.com reports that although Zuckerberg might not be taking a “hands-on” role in the IPO process, he will be appearing before potential shareholders and will attend key meetings.

The roadshow is an opportunity for potential investors and analysts to evaluate Facebook’s IPO plan, including its valuation of $100 billion or more. The social network’s planned public offering is set to be the biggest Internet IPO on record, significantly larger than recent IPOs by other technology companies, including Zynga, LinkedIn and Groupon.

In late April, Facebook disclosed that its profit fell 12 percent in the first quarter, to $205 million, as its expenses climbed.

Facebook will have to convince marketers of the strength of advertising through its network, but many advertisers are beginning to wonder whether they’re getting their money’s worth from the company, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

Advertisers such as Kia Motors are worried about the difficulties of measuring results from the nascent forms of social-media advertising used on Facebook, the Journal said.


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