Morgan Stanley to Lead Facebook’s $5 Billion IPO

Facebook will reportedly file for a $5 billion initial public offering today in what is expected to be the largest IPO ever to emerge from Silicon Valley.

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Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) will take lead on the IPO. Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), Bank of America Merrill Lynch (NYSE:BAC), Barclays Capital (NYSE:BCS), and JPMorgan (JPMR) were also chosen as underwriters.

The $5 billion is said to be a preliminary target and could be ramped up in coming months in response to investor demand, according to Thomson Reuters unit IFR. Final pricing will not be set for several months.

Morgan Stanley likely won the “lead left” position on Facebook’s IPO because of its experience in arranging other major Internet IPOs, including those of Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) and Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA). But this IPO, a prized trophy for any investment make, may set a new standard for how low its arrangers are willing to go on advisory fees to win big business.

Facebook’s IPO is expected to be one of the largest U.S. market debuts in history, its coming-out party expected to dwarf almost all that came before, including Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) $2 billion IPO.

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To contact the reporter on this story: Emily Knapp at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com