VentureBeat’s Eric Eldon has heard from
a (see comment #1) multiple sources that Facebook is allowing employees to sell some of their stock at an internal valuation of $4 billion. When Microsoft announced that they would invest in Facebook, the software giant pegged the social network’s valuation at $15 billion.
Since Facebook isn’t planning on selling themselves off or having an IPO anytime soon, this should motivate employees to stick around for longer. Former employees do not need permission to sell off their shares vested in Facebook, but current employees require permission. Some former Facebook employees have already been selling stock at a valuation of $4 billion or more.
How will selling the shares work? Facebook may arrange for a single investor to buy up all the shares in one transaction. Facebook may allow employees to decide who to unload the shares to themselves. Or Facebook may borrow money to buy shares back themselves.
At the end of the day, Facebook needs to beware of who is getting their shares. When a former Craigslist employee sold his shares to eBay, it caused some internal problems with the company. Now eBay and Craigslist are suing each other back and forth. Facebook and their shareholders need to be on the same page.
1. Techmeme Discussion