More Financing Rumors: Facebook Near Close of $150 Million to Repurchase Employee Stock
Facebook is close to finalizing a $150 million round of financing which it intends to primarily use to buy back stock from current employees, VentureBeat reports.
According to the report, Facebook will repurchase 15 million shares of stock at $10 each, which is around recent valuations we’ve heard for employee stock in secondary markets and should provide most early employees a substantial return. Accel, Greylock, Founders Fund, and “Asian investors” are said to be participating.
Last month, several rumors circulated around Facebook’s valuation and fundraising efforts, saying that Facebook was recently offered term sheets at $2 billion and $4 billion by private equity shops Providence Equity Partners, General Atlantic, and others. Most of those rumors focus on Facebook’s burn rate and need to raise more capital to pay for servers.
However, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told BusinessWeek in an interview last month that the company was “profitable [and] on a clear path to being cash-flow positive,” and in a leaked letter to company employees a couple months ago, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the company expects revenue growth of 70% in 2009 from a reported $270-$280 million in 2008.
However, Facebook has not officially announced any details on its internal valuation since Microsoft’s $240 million strategic investment in 2007 that valued the company at a very high $15 billion. We’ll continue tracking Facebook’s fundraising efforts as it continues to grow this year.