Timing isn't everything in life, but it helps.
And now that Facebook's (FB) stock has been cut in half since its May IPO, which priced at $38 per share, it's time to compliment the clever folks who sold when everyone else was convinced that playing the Facebook IPO was pretty much a sure thing. Ahead of the IPO I placed fair value for the social media giant somewhere between $16 to $24. Aaron Task and I discuss Facebook's valuation in the attached clip. (Editor's note: video was taped August 2.)
At the time of the IPO, of course, these sellers appeared almost selfless: demand for Facebook's stock was so intense that it seemed the inside sellers would soon look like schmoes for selling too cheap.
Alas, if there's one lesson that gets repeated endlessly on Wall Street it's that anything that seems like a free lunch almost certainly isn't.
And now, the Facebook insiders who sold on the IPO look, well, savvy.
So, who were these folks? How much did they make?
Here are some highlights:
- Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's CEO, sold 30.2 million shares for $1.14 billion
- Accel Partners, an early Facebook investor, sold 57.7 million shares for $2.1 billion
- Peter Thiel, a very early Facebook investor, sold 16.8 million shares for $638 million
- DST Global, a Russian investment fund, sold 45.7 million shares for $1.7 billion
- Goldman Sachs, a Facebook investor, sold 24.3 million shares for $923 million
- Elevation Partners, a Facebook investor, sold 4.6 million shares for $175 million
- Greylock Partners, a Facebook investor, sold 7.6 million shares for $289 million
- Mail.ru Group, a Russian Internet company, sold 19.6 million shares for $745 million
- Mark Pincus, the CEO of Zynga, sold 1 million shares for $38 million. Mr. Pincus also dumped stock in Zynga in April, right before that stock crashed.
- Meritech Capital sold 7 million shares for $266 million
- Microsoft, a Facebook partner and investor, sold 6.6 million shares for $250 million
- Tiger Global, a hedge fund, sold 19 million shares for $722 million
- Reid Hoffman, a Silicon Valley investor, sold 943,000 shares for $36 million
In aggregate, Facebook insiders dumped 241 million shares for $9.8 billion.
Those shares are now worth $4.8 billion.
Yes, all of these Facebook insiders still own a lot of Facebook stock, so they're all getting gobsmacked by the collapse.
In current trading Monday, Facebook stock is selling for $21.75 a share.