With it being just less then two weeks away from the potential launch of Facebook’s IPO roadshow, a string of acquisitions and other business distractions are becoming possible threats to the delay of the sale, say people who are familiar with the matter at hand.
The Facebook team has been eyeing to have their offering in May and the roadshow to launch as early as May 7th. Trading of the stock would of started sometime on the week of the 14th.
In recent weeks, founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been focused on running the business and making acquisitions such as buying Instagram for $1 billion to better prepare for the share sale. This made it hard for him and other managers to focus on the IPO preparations which are extremely tedious and time consuming.
As a result of this change in game plan, the roadshow will launch somewhere around May 14th or even late May depending on how things go. This would delay the initial trading until early or mid-June.
That’s because the Memorial Day holiday, which is May 28, will likely mean that the stock market is less liquid, and therefore less hospitable, to a new issue like Facebook for several trading days late in May, making it a bad time to be on the road or to launch trading.
Effectively, says one person familiar with the matter, Facebook is looking at a “Plan A, B, C, and a D” for its IPO.
A Facebook spokesman declined to comment on the expected timing of the deal.
Having a CEO like Zuckerberg whose bias is to hunker down and do his job rather than fixating on potential stock prices and investors may be more an asset than a liability.
However, Zuckerberg’s surprise decisions to buy Instagram for $1 billion over the course of a weekend and a $550 million patent portfolio from Microsoft have created the need for additional financial disclosures with the SEC, say lawyers and other people familiar with the matter, and answering all the Commission’s questions could take additional time.