The Facebook IPO? Microsoft Needs to Step UP!

My friend Andy sent me a great article today on the Facebook phenomenon. Andy is the founder of Lotame (see his Wallstrip Interview ), of which I am an advisor.

The article speaks volumes on why “social media” is the next frontier that advertisers NEED to be in, to have a “dialogue”
with their consumer base. Andy and Lotame are at the center of a hurricane of activity as the big media companies jockey to properly monetize his new frontier. It’s why you are seeing such huge deals for Doubleclick and Aquantive for example.

Furthermore, if you believe the article, I DO , it is clear that Microsoft CAN’T lose Facebook to an IPO and a much higher valuation, nor to Google. From the article above:

Just as Google has become what some people call the operating system for search, Facebook is turning itself into the operating system for social networking. While Google knows what millions of people are searching for, Facebook has something the search giant hasn’t been able to grow: a network of connections between people that creates a viral distribution platform unrivaled by any portal or search engine.

I really like my experience so far on Facebook. So does Andy. We are newbies here. Old fogies. I don’t see myself spending too much time there, but it seems efficient so far. Other smart people complain about the noise , so I will continue to be patient and dabble.

I personally think Facebook should be well on their way to an IPO.

If they actually are, Google and Microsoft should be in a bidding war. If that’s the case, Microsoft WILL NOT lose this one .

So what could/should Microsoft pay?

They have a $270 plus billion market cap and they have flatlined for 5 years. They have close to $30 billion in cash. The stock needs a jolt. A big one. I have called them dead many times on this blog. Dead from a growth perspective. I think they can afford $5-$7 billion to get people interested in a Microsoft growth story again. Actually, it’s cheap.

A Facebook acquisition gives Microsoft a new battleground on which to force Google to play catch up or even give up.

Yes, they would probably f#$%$^ck it up in the end, but it would be an exciting year ahead watching them.


  1. Completely agree. Now that facebook has opened up its doors to third party APIs, there is nothing stopping fb from going public.

    The reality is that the fb crowd is more loyal than that of myspace. Its viral effect is much stronger than any other social networking phenomenon and its user base can only expand further.

    I am way long facebook and wish there was a way for me to get in there before one of the big dogs buys them out.

    MSFT should take this opportunity to take Zuckerberg back to the table and inject some capital and see how this company will perform on beyond the confines of the US.

  2. Brett says:

    A buyout is likely, but Microsoft will only screw up Facebook. Microsoft often misses the point when it comes to the younger generations. Microsoft is missing the sexy factor that apple has been able to cultivate so well. I would buy some FACE stock!

  3. Pingback: Howard Lindzon » Is Microsoft about to Join the Nasdaq Party with Facebook Acquisition?
  4. rvb1977 says:

    I don’t know alot of details about MSFT, but isn’t an open API the exact opposite of what MSFT believes in? Wouldn’t that be a cultural clash?

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