A Facebook IPO, the one everyone's been waiting for, may not be coming for at least another year, but there may be a chance to invest in a popular social network soon as LinkedIn is said to be filing for an initial public offer sometime this year, within the next several months. The plans are underway and have been in the works for a few months now.
Reuters and others cited sources close to the social network claiming that LinkedIn had already selected the underwriters for the move.
The decision to file for an IPO was made in the final months of 2010, the sources also claim. The initial moves will be made in the first quarter of 2011.
News of an IPO in the web sector is especially interesting in the context of Facebook's massive new funding round. The mammoth social network raised a reported $500 million at a valuation of $50 billion.
LinkedIn is estimated to be worth a few billion dollars itself, below the popular Twitter and about as much as the fast-rising Zynga.
There is an interest from companies in the social web space to file for an IPO before Facebook. The time seems right for such a move and investors are certainly interested in web companies.
The fear is that once Facebook does finally go for an IPO, the interest will die down making the move less profitable for smaller companies wanting to go public.
LinkedIn has some 85 million users and is focused on business professionals. Its audience should be particularly interesting for advertisers and marketers. The data it has gathered could prove very valuable to the right companies, as well.
So far though, it has failed to make too much use of data, but the company does have a couple of solid revenue streams. LinkedIn would not comment on the rumor but said that an IPO could be one of the paths the company chooses.