Facebook goes public

Zuckerberg, employees celebrate on Menlo Park campus

Instead of chatting on Facebook, a lot of people are talking about Facebook today. The social networking giant debuted its public stock offering at 8:30 a.m. Pacific Time today, with initial shares trading at $42.05 on NASDAQ, up from its IPO price of $38.

Track the current trading on this CNNMoney site.

The stock exchange recorded the bell-ringing ceremony held by Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the company's Menlo Park campus (click here to watch the action).

Menlo Park, as the home of Facebook's new headquarters on 1 Hacker Way, will see its name mentioned in newspapers around the world as one of the biggest global events ever to happen in a town that prides itself on "village character" unfolds. According to CNN, going public stands to raise at least $16 billion for Facebook, making it the largest tech IPO and third largest IPO in the United States.

Some of that wealth will flow back into Menlo Park; the city recently approved an agreement related to Facebook's planned campus expansion that will generate $8.5 million total in graduated payments during the next 10 years, and followed by $5 million during the subsequent four years, as well as funding for community and infrastructure improvements.

Facebook employees celebrated in their traditional manner by holding an all-night Hackathon that started on Thursday.


Like this comment
Posted by moi
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 18, 2012 at 10:20 am

Newly-wealthy Facebook employees:

In the market for a nicer home?

Some of those soon-to-be-former-HP employees may be listing soon.


Like this comment
Posted by Enough!
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on May 18, 2012 at 10:51 am

This isn't happy news for all of us. Just like what happened last time we had a tech bubble, people with modest incomes were pushed out of the area due to overly inflated values for everything from houses, to cars to teeshirts. When anyone spoke up about the inequities, these same people would publicly state, such as on this own paper's forum, that people who cannot afford to live here, should get out. Nice to be so cavalier while sitting on your padded wallets making decisions for the lives of others. What I see, again, is even more hideously expensive rents, homes being sold for hundreds of thousands, millions actually, over actual worth, much less asking price. Fast luxury cars driven by people reeking of entitlement cutting me off on the freeway. People who have to service these millionaires, cops, firefighters, teachers and food and service industry people, have to commute long distances to get to work. People who have suddenly come into money and not knowing how to handle their newfound wealth with class and grace. Abusive to waiters, rude to our public servants, abrasive in their new positions of entitlement. Sour grapes? Sure. There's that. I'm personally not asking for much, I would give anything just to find a small two bedroom house for reasonable rent so I can be close to my elderly mother. That won't happen for me, and it won't happen for anyone else in my position. Employed, with no health insurance, no paid time off, no vacation pay. We struggle from paycheck to paycheck. As this new wealth hits the valley, the divide becomes wider, with no bridge that will fill the gap. There's also a whole new batch of 1%er's making the lives of others just a bit more miserable. Happy for the people who did well today, and sad for the rest of us who work just as hard for very little compensation who also want a nice life.

Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on May 18, 2012 at 11:26 am

moi & Enough - I echo your sentiments. It's so bizarre to read about the potential loss of 35 THOUSAND jobs while FB goes public. It's a stark contrast just a few miles apart.

Enough! I appreciate your words, but I'm so sorry for the position that you & so many others are in. I've also been there & it's easier when young & healthy. It's NOT right for those who are aging and/or have worked hard their whole lives. I don't so much resent the individuals who get lucky as I resent the inevitable changes that occur here, eroding civility, quality of life unless you're a 1%er & also eroding further opportunity for so many. Seeing the Robber Baron mentality explode so greatly w/out some counter-balancing attitudes is disturbing.

Have you looked on the west side of EPA for decent housing? It's not a perfect area, but the rent stabilization ordinance is a fair one.

Like this comment
Posted by Enough!
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on May 18, 2012 at 11:52 am

@Hmmmm, you nailed it right on the head! And I too, felt Moi's sadness when I heard the news yesterday about the layoff's at HP. I am of that age demographic that is all but banned from the tech world that has become Silicon Valley...which I resent because it was people in my age group who started the whole thing. Also, people in my age group who have a basic grasp on technology would be useful to these various companies because we understand the limitations of the older crowd and would have a better approach to assisting these people in getting more connected. I have talked to many people who find the impatience of youth when instructing more mature persons in the use of the internet is more off putting than the experience itself.

I haven't looked in EPA because I'm afraid to...the crime rate scares me. I have managed to scrape by in Palo Alto for 38 years and now am facing having to move away to God knows where because it's ridiculously overpriced, and will become even more so. Maybe someone will rent me their shed.

Like this comment
Posted by Ada
a resident of Midtown
on May 18, 2012 at 12:26 pm

You sound like Palo Alto is the only overpriced area around. It is on par with Los Altos, Saratoga, Los Gatos, San Francisco, not to mention Atherton, Hillsborough, etc. But compare to real estate prices and rents in Manhattan, London or Paris, and you will see that it is still relatively cheap here compared to them.

Like this comment
Posted by Enough!
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on May 18, 2012 at 12:31 pm

20/20 did a comparison show a few years ago, Palo Alto real estate and Manhattan real estate were comparable. Actually, I do mean the entire bay area.

Like this comment
Posted by notanymore
a resident of St. Claire Gardens
on May 18, 2012 at 12:33 pm

You could see right now the property in good area in shanghai costs more than an average one in pa and it is not a house just an apartment.

Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on May 18, 2012 at 3:33 pm

Enough! I encourage you to check out the west side. It's not paradisical, but has some wonderful aspects. You can have a plot at the community garden, take free classes there & be able to be close to your mother, I hope. If you want more info or assistance in checking it out, I'd be happy to help: iamhmmm (at) yahoo - you can email me if you want. The west side crime rate isn't a big deal, and if you're in a duplex or fourplex, you have onsite parking & an inbuilt community, so it's generally safe. The one good thing about having a conglomerate own all the rental property on the west side is that there's also security, so they're helpful for annoying & quality of life issues the that police don't have time to handle.

The police also host monthly beat meetings, they have a Facebook page & there are so many friendly people here it's sometimes stunning! I just showed my parents around at one of the community gardens & they loved it. We met a new gardener who lives in an apt. & she was THRILLED to have a garden bed - oh - & it's free. You can also shop at our farmer's market or order a CSA box - it's a new offering. We joined & it's wonderful - I just pick up on the west side. They'll be having a pick up location in Palo Alto, downtown & Stanford very soon, so residents of neighboring towns can order a CSA box, too.

When the Palo Alto rapist was active, I had friends who lived in midtown who felt safer here than in PA because we all kept an eye on each other.

I am not trying to pressure you at all - I just want to point out the very real positives of living here, in addition to renters being an appreciated, respected demographic.

The current youth-centric aspect in tech is very, very off-putting. When I worked in HR, I had an older tech employee who was very worried about how she'd be treated by the VCs when we were funded & in a growth phase. The valley's only gotten worse. Heck, all the orginal whiz kids are middle-aged, passed away or heading toward being senior citizens now. The youth-centrism all goes w/the push push strive strive attitude that's become so pervasive.

Good for you for not giving up! We don't want to leave until WE want to leave - we won't be driven out. That's part of why working so hard on renters' rights & fighting the greed of the corporations recently who've bought all of this property is important. Merely through owning property they want to change the WHOLE city, even though the city's laws & rules are in place due to voters, founders & at the will of the RESIDENTS. It's corporate manifest destiny & we have to be ever vigilant.

Like this comment
Posted by MIke
a resident of University South
on May 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm

@Enough! How is it your elderly mom and get by in Palo Alto, but you can't? It's my understanding that 38 years ago Palo Alto houses were much more affordable to the common (wo)man than it is now. Why didn't you get in then?

Anyone with $38 + commissions could have become a Facebook shareholder today.

Like this comment
Posted by susie
a resident of Barron Park
on May 18, 2012 at 6:04 pm

Facebook is a win for the local community.
Zucker-punched Wall Street.
The stock price will tank next week. My guess is at about 15 not 100 Billion. But Zuckerberg will still be rich. Very VEYR VERY rich as will his colleagues. For an essentially outdated out moded, un updated, challenged, unhip, database of kids with multiple identities and no spending power.

Palo Alto still wins.

Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on May 18, 2012 at 6:38 pm

Susie - how does Palo Alto win? Facebook isn't in Palo Alto.

Like this comment
Posted by Outside Observer
a resident of another community
on May 18, 2012 at 7:04 pm

Now that Facebook is a publicly traded company they will come under the scrutiny of federal regulators. For most, that would be a death sentence, but I think Facebook has greased all the palms necessary to keep the Feds at bay.

Like this comment
Posted by facebook tanked
a resident of Green Acres
on May 18, 2012 at 7:45 pm

I see their stock did dismally today. Facebook is out of style. When parents and grandparents are Fbooking, it's no longer "in." Hah! Facebook, meet Myspace. Once hot. Now not.

Like this comment
Posted by Rumpelstiltskin
a resident of Midtown
on May 19, 2012 at 1:11 am


Like this comment
Posted by old is new again
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 19, 2012 at 7:07 am

Aah the great cycle of tech life... what's how, now not, next ..let them rot.

May we all learn to view one another with some compassion and act with charity

As everyone is so busy sharing personal details online via FB and a host of other firms of similar ilk, other firms will come along to replace them. I listen with glee to the flood of younger people reinvent the technical wheel , as they have no sense of what has come before in the world, and the interaction that occurs during those struggles when they find out the idea was patented before they were born.

So allow our FB frememies their day of wine and roses and enjoy it while they can in the obliviousness of youth because it won't last as long as they think. After all in many cases, they too will be old and unemployed and scrambling to survive. ,

As i have explained to many a youngster, i may look old but the brain still works . so its time to start our own tech revolution ....again.

who will join me?

Like this comment
Posted by RussianMom
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on May 19, 2012 at 3:51 pm

Congratulations. It's an achievement. Not all are pleased, but it's a good inspiration for young adults. I am amazed with all jealousy...

Like this comment
Posted by neighbor
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 20, 2012 at 2:46 pm

most overhyped IPO ever, per Bob Brinker, MoneyTalk (syndicated radio show on finance for over 25 yrs)-- Sunday May 20, 2012.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Burger chain Shake Shack to open in Palo Alto
By Elena Kadvany | 11 comments | 3,526 views

Eat, Surf, Love
By Laura Stec | 4 comments | 1,185 views

Couples: So You Married Mom or Dad . . .
By Chandrama Anderson | 1 comment | 1,138 views

The Cost of Service
By Aldis Petriceks | 1 comment | 799 views

One-on-one time
By Cheryl Bac | 0 comments | 215 views