Facebook shares soar - new billionaires minted

Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg, seen here in a 2012 photo when she was co-Chair of the World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting. Photo / Wiki commons
Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg, seen here in a 2012 photo when she was co-Chair of the World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting. Photo / Wiki commons

Facebook shares have climbed to a new high, catapulting chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg on to the roster of tech billionaires.

Shares of the world's leading social network closed the Nasdaq trading day on Tuesday at US$58.51, shedding a few cents in after-hours trade.

Sandberg owns about US$750 million worth of Facebook stock and is said to have sold about US$300 million worth of shares since the California-based company became a publicly traded company in May of 2012.

The 44-year-old former Google executive is also reported to have stock options for nearly five million shares that began vesting last year.

The social media giant started by Mark Zuckerberg, which now has more than 1.1 billion users around the globe, had a rocky debut after it went public at US$38 a share with a valuation of US$16 billion.

Facebook shares dropped below US$20 during the ensuing months and only climbed back over their offer price in July of last year.

Zuckerberg, who will turn 30 in May, has a personal fortune estimated at about US$19 billion.

Facebook will release its quarterly earnings figures next week.

-AFP

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