Facebook now valued at $70 billion

The Facebook social networking web site and service is now currently valued at about $70 billion, thanks to a new investor who is buying a small piece of the still privately owned company. Reuters reports that the GSV Capital Corp investment fund has purchased 225,000 shares of Facebook stock at $29.28 a share. Currently Facebook has about 2.4 billion outstanding shares, according to the article. The article states that with this new stock purchase, the total worth of Facebook is now slightly less than  "Amazon.com Inc, Cisco Systems Inc or Hewlett-Packard Co."

Facebook has received a lot of money from outside investors since it was founded in 2004, including a $240 million cash infusion from Microsoft in 2007. Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg owns about 24 percent of the company.  Facebook's user base continues to grow with third party outlets claiming that the company currently has about 750 million registered users.

While Facebook has yet to officially confirm these plans, there are rumors that the company has been in preliminary talks with banks about launching a public stock offering for the company. Such a IPO might launch in 2012. Back in April Reuters also reported via unnamed sources that a number of Facebook shareholders was seeking to sell off about $1 billion worth of the company's stock to the secondary market. The shareholders apparently had some concerns that the company's growth was not keeping pace with its overall value. There's no word if that stock sell off actually happened.

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