The latest rumor about investments in Facebook concerns General Atlantic picking up a tenth of a percent stake in the company, some 2.5 million shares, valuing the whole at $65 billion.
CNBC cites unnamed people “with knowledge of the transaction” as the source for a report about General Atlantic, an investment company with $17 billion in assets. While General Atlantic and the selling shareholders have reportedly agreed to the transaction, it’ll require the approval of Facebook and so has not yet closed.
The social network has a policy of not commenting on matters of speculation, so I practically apologized when asking whether the CNBC report was true, having just asked about another speculative topic perhaps an hour prior.
Therein lies the challenge of covering privately-held companies: We have no way to know whether any financial information is true or not until the company in question reaches a threshold that requires public disclosures of information. If anyone at Facebook or General Atlantic comments at this point, it’s a generous favor. It’s in neither party’s best interest to discuss this rumor publicly because the offer could fall through.
Readers, what do you think about the report that General Atlantic may have bought a tenth of a percent of Facebook, valuing the company at $65 billion?