road to ipo
We’re often told that Facebook’s tumultuous initial public offering—not to mention disappointing post-IPO results at social web companies such as Zynga and Groupon—have rejiggered the tech landscape, making investors and founders alike wary of the public markets. And yet, the more things change …
Actually, being in the billion dollar startup club kind of sucks. [New York Times]
Any person with children who purchases a computer in the U.K. will be forced to apply anti-porn safety controls to it, because there’s absolutely no way kids who want to look at porn will be able to get around that. [Daily Mail]
Cisco balls so hard they just dished out $1.2 billion in cash for Meraki, a wifi startup. [TechCrunch]
How did nerds impact the election? Turns out 30,000 Redditors registered to vote after President Obama linked to a voter registration page in his AMA. [The Atlantic]
According to U.S. search results, Americans care more about Twinkies than the Israel/Gaza conflict. We are all the worst. [Virtus Machina]
considering the options
The total number of Facebook shares available is about to increase by almost double, and the market seems to like it. The stock price is up nearly 6 percent in the first minutes since the market opened, defying conventional wisdom that prices should fall when a lockup ends.
What gives? It may be that investors have already accounted for the influx of new shares.
As anyone who’s paid any attention over the last six months will undoubtedly already know, Mitt Romney has about five dollars more than God. Consequently, the man does things like set up trust funds for his children and grandchildren, which has enabled the Romney clan, as a whole, to sidestep paying quite a lot of taxes. And that’s why there are little Romneys scampering about who probably did better at Bubble 1.0 than many of you.
According to Bloomberg News:
IP Uh Oh
It’s been almost four months since Facebook’s alarmingly botched IPO, and yet its specter still haunts the markets. On Friday, $FB stock closed at $18.06 a share, dropping a sharp 5.40 percent in a single day–the worst drop a tech company experienced that day. (Comparatively, Zynga–which has been widely panned for its parachuting stock–only dropped 3.11 percent.) To date, Facebook has lost $50 billion in market value since its IPO.
And yet, despite much talk of banks and underwriters and Facebook’s nascent leadership team, we’ve yet to pin down a real target for our IPO ire. Luckily, Dealbook’s Andrew Ross Sorkin thinks he’s found the likely culprit: Facebook CFO David Ebersman, whom you’ve probably never even heard of:
Microsoft Outlook now operates in-browser and is apparently a legitimate Gmail competitor? No flipping desks for Steve Ballmer today. [Wired]
Things are not looking good in iPad mag land. The Daily has laid off a 1/3rd of its staff. [AllThingsD]
Kevin Rose did an AMA, just in time for the release of the new Digg. It got less than 1,000 upvotes and apparently he didn’t actually answer any questions. [Reddit]
Two online poker sites are paying millions in damages following fraud and money laundering charges. Guess the government called their bluff. [New York Times]
Times Square will broadcast the Mars landing on one of those gigantic screens. The space geek in us is currently fighting with the person in us who fucking hates Times Square. [NASA]
UBS lost $356 million in the Facebook IPO. Yikes. [The New York Times]
Looks like we’re gonna have to add another name to our Facebook Mafia list. Chief technology officer Bret Taylor told Kara Swisher at AllThingsD that he will be leaving the company for an “undetermined startup.” Shortly after, he acknowledged his departure on his Facebook page. (A parting traffic gift, perhaps?)
Twitter aired its first ever TV commercial yesterday–during a NASCAR race. [AllThingsD]
Everything you wanted to know about the @Sweden Twitter account: “I wanted to show that I’m often kind of immature and often kind of stupid and so is this country, and I bet you are, too, and so are a lot of people around the world.” Think Mayor Bloomberg would let us do something like this? [New York Times]
There is now a Silicon Valley Bank in the U.K. for just technology investments. Discuss bubble implications as you wish. [BBC]
Google is shutting down Meebo messenger: be still my 8th grade heart. [meebo.com]
Facebook’s user growth is slowing, which cannot be good for the company’s already-battered stock. [Wall Street Journal]
No one wants to IPO now that Facebook’s went so terribly. [Wall Street Journal]
For your morning rage blackout: Ellen Pao is obviously lying because her husband has sued people before. [New York Post]
CNN’s Laurie Segall managed to sneak in a question about Facebook’s IPO debacle by Sean Parker during a promotional tour for his new startup Airtime. “Somehow I knew I was going to get this question,” Mr. Parker winced, holding his head in his hands. But the former Facebook president quickly rebounded, blaming the hype and then the media for the stock’s volatile performance.
“It was sort of a relief in a way,” he said. “We knew that that speculative interest was not going to go in a good direction. It never ends well. whenever there’s something that’s so hotly anticipated and so speculative. The thing that was unexpected was how quickly the media turned on it and therefore short circuited the retail investor and their speculation.”
It seems more than a little disingenuous for Mr. Parker to scapegoat speculators when Facebook decided to both price shares higher than expected and increase the number of shares offered by more than 25 percent.
Head for your bunkers: Facebook fallout is upon us. (Maybe.) Bloomberg reports that–according to one source, anyway–Kayak plans to delay its IPO, in the wake of Facebook’s less-than-stellar debut. Says Bloomberg:
The Norwalk, Connecticut-based online travel service has postponed the roadshow for the offering, which was scheduled to start last week, said the person, who declined to be identified because the information is private. Morgan Stanley, the lead bank on Facebook’s initial share sale, also was hired to lead Kayak’s IPO.
Facebook’s stock is currently at $28.19, well under its $38 debut. Given that it was the highest-profile technology IPO in years (seriously, “frenzy” doesn’t even do it justice), there was no way that wasn’t going to have some sort of impact. One researcher told Bloomberg: “After Facebook’s tumble, investors are not willing to buy pie in the sky.” Ouch.