The Facebook IPO; What does it mean?

Facebook files for a $5 billion IPO (initial public offering)….

Mark Zuckerburg set out to create a social network for his college, which quickly expanded to other colleges and eventually encompassed the world.  It seems that almost everyone you see physically within the real-world also has an online identity.  Facebook completely put MySpace to rest; users immediately admired the lightweight interface and ease of use.  Also, with the company consistently updating the site and adding more features using is hacker-esque approach, we should expect nothing but continual growth from this powerhouse.

On the other hand, when a company goes public and acquires money hungry shareholders things can go down very quickly.  Zuckerburg will always maintain a large share of the company; however, now he will not be the only person that will need to be pleased — it will be him along with everyone else who buy in significantly.  So, this brings up an important question.  Will the company continue it’s domination or take a turn for the worse since more opinions will need to be heard?  Time will only tell.  Additionally, even if Facebook did take a plunge it wouldn’t be overnight the company has posted earnings of $777 million in 2009, $1.974 billion in 2010, and $3.711 billion last year.

Bottom line:  Be excited for what Facebook could bring in the future; just be aware that it can become very different because of new shareholders.