Norway’s wealth fund passed on Facebook investment
The rules governing Norway’s sovereign wealth fund kept it from jumping on board when Facebook asked it to invest in the social media giant ahead of its 2012 IPO.
The head of the Norwegian Government Pension Fund told VG that Facebook reached out ahead of its IPO to see if the sovereign wealth fund, the largest of its kind in the world, was interested in becoming an investor.
“It wasn’t at the inception of Facebook, but it was before it was listed. We are not allowed to invest in companies before they are listed so we couldn’t go along when we received the request,” Ynge Slygstad said.
Slygstad said that the fund has not calculated how much money it could have made if it would have taken Facebook up on the offer.
Facebook shares are today worth about three times as much as they were at the IPO four years ago. Over the years, Norway’s wealth fund has acquired just over half a percent ownership in the company, an investment that last year was calculated at roughly 13.6 billion kroner.