Facebook raises $1.5 bn; Goldman funds limited

Saturday, January 22, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO - Facebook raised $1.5 billion in funding, but has limited the financing by investment giant Goldman Sachs to $1 billion, the social networking company announced Friday.

The transaction includes a previously announced investment by Goldman Sachs of $450 million and a $50-million injection from Russian internet firm Digital Sky Technologies. The other billion dollars was raised in an oversubscribed offering by Goldman Sachs to its non-US clients, the company said.

Goldman Sachs and other investors value the company at approximately $50 billion.

“Under the transactions terms, Facebook had the option to accept between $375 million and $1.5 billion from the Goldman Sachs overseas offering, at the discretion of Facebook,” the company said in the statement. While the offering was oversubscribed, Facebook made a business decision to limit the offering to 1 billion dollars.”

Goldman Sachs in recent days had to bar domestic investors from participating in the Facebook deal due to questions raised by the regulatory authority Security Exchange Commission.

Under US law, any company that has more than 500 investors must file public financial reports. Facebook, held privately until now, plans to do so in April.

“Our business continues to perform well, and we are pleased to be able to bolster our cash position with this new financing,” said David Ebersman, Facebook’s chief financial officer. “With this investment completed, we now have greater financial flexibility to explore whatever opportunities lie ahead.”

The company said it had no immediate plans for these funds.

“Facebook will continue investing to build and expand its operations,” the company said in a statement.

Filed under: Economy

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