The social network priced its flotation at $38 a share, valuing the company at $104bn (£65.8bn) – more than any other US company has been worth on the day of its market debut.
The busines, which was founded by 28-year old Mark Zuckerberg from his dorm room at Harvard University, raised more than $16bn in the process, marking the second biggest initial public offering there has even been. Only Visa’s was larger.
Shares in Facebook are expected to climb even higher when they begin trading on Nasdaq tomorrow, under the FB ticker, as frenzied demand from investors outweighs concerns over the long-term prospects of the business.
Mr Zuckerberg will mark the start of trading by ringing the stock exchange’s bell remotely from his California headquarters, where around a thousand Facebook staff are devoting the night to a “hackathon” – the sessions the social network runs when it wants to quickly develop a new product.
Every time I log on to Facebook these days, I feel as if a little bit of me dies inside. Specifically, the bit of me responsible for faith in the world and the human beings that inhabit it. It’s not just that Bono stands to make more than a billion dollars from the company’s flotation (he was an early financial backer), although obviously this does very little to kerb the feelings of misanthropy that threaten to engulf my very being every time I see that stupid little F logo. No. It’s mostly my “friends” on the site, who seem to spend their days sharing meaningful quotes, pictures of snowmen they have built, and extreme political opinions of both persuasions.
Here’s the thing: Facebook has made me actively dislike people. Worse, I think it has made me actively enjoy disliking people. For passive aggressives who are too weak simply to de-friend the people they don’t like and get on with their lives, Facebook (and Twitter, for that matter) are dangerous things. These aren’t social networks – they are anti-social networks, outlets for all manner of pent-up aggression that might turn me into a complete sociopath otherwise.
For many, her forthright views on mobile phones, iPads, social networks and their ilk will come as a breath of fresh air.Joanna Lumley declares technology ‘a waste of life’ and admits she prefers pencil and paper to texting or tweeting.The 65-year-old Absolutely Fabulous star also revealed that she did not even use her mobile phone and kept it ‘switched off at all times’. Traditional: Joanna Lumley declares technology is a waste of life and admits she prefers pencil and paper to texting or tweetingMiss Lumley was adamant that she would not be following in the footsteps of Ab Fab creator Jennifer Saunders, who recently joined Twitter and now has more than 41,000 followers.She said she would never join a social networking site, adding: ‘Never, not Facebook, not anything. I’m returning to writing in pencil on lined paper