The vastly popular social networking internet site Facebook is reportedly set to change from being a private to a public company selling billions of dollars worth of shares.
It would be the largest initial public offering of shares ever to emerge from Silicon Valley.
Mark Zuckerberg, who started the company in 2004, will become much richer as investors clamour for a part of his company.
Analyst Jim O’shaughnessy said: “Many IPOs come out being very, very overvalued because they get so hyped up and investors are so taken in by the story that they’re willing to pay any amount just to be able to get into the stock.”
Facebook’s worth comes from the fact that over 800 million people use the site each month, and half of those come back every day.
It is forecast to have generated revenue the equivalent of 3.3 billion euros last year with three billion of that from advertising making a profit of 650 million euros.
Reportedly it will initially raise five billion dollars (3.8 billion euros) and depending on how much the shares sell for that could make the site worth more than 50 billion euros when they start trading, which could be as early as May.
Others from the same sphere are watching with interest; there are rumours Twitter could go public as early as next year.
Get a different perspective
Every story can be told in many ways: see the perspectives from Euronews journalists in our other language teams.