Facebook sets price for biggest-ever US IPO

Facebook set out more details about its long-awaited IPO in a new filing that reveals that an initial share of the company’s stock will sell for between $28 and $35.

The proposed sale price will value the company at between $77 bilion and $96 billion which would make it America’s richest ever IPO, well-exceeding Google’s (s goog) 2004 valuation of $24 billion.

The sale will also see founder Mark Zuckerberg sell 30 million shares but retain 57.3 percent control over the voting shares in the company.

The details were set out in an amendment to the S-1 that Facebook filed with the SEC in late April.

Facebook is expected to begin a roadshow in various cities next week at which it will tout the company and drum up interest in the IPO.

The shares will be sold on the NASDAQ exchange under the symbol FB.

The $28 to $35 preliminary opening price, which could change in coming days, is lower than some earlier predictions. The Wall Street Journal reports that secondary markets had valued the shares as high as $44 in recent days.

The Facebook IPO will be a monumental moment for corporate America and for Silicon Valley, where many other companies are hoping to ride the social network’s explosive growth to public offerings of their own.

The hype over Facebook, including its recent $1 billion acquisition of photo-sharing site Instagram, have led some pundits to warn of a new Silicon Valley bubble like the one that popped in 2001. Others say the media is making the claims merely to drive controversy.

Facebook makes the lion’s share of its money by selling ads that appear alongside users’ profiles but also pockets cash by taking a cut when third parties make a digital sale on the site.