Top Social Media IPO Contenders

3- LinkedIn

In a recent Reuters report one of the largest business-related social networks is mulling over the idea of an IPO. LinkedIn, with 53 million members worldwide is seen as a strong IPO contender and a Reuters poll found it one of the Silicon Valley's most eligible to go public.

Valued at $1 billion, the firm backed by Goldman Sachs, McGraw Hill, SAP Ventures and Bessemer Venture Partners raised $76 million in its last funding in 2008. While affirms that an IPO is part of co-founder Reid Hoffman's exit strategy, Hoffman sees an IPO as inevitable but is also not tying himself to a specific date. "Probably at some point a balance will occur when that's the right thing. (But) that will not occur in the near term," Hoffman said at a London event to celebrate the network's reaching 3 million users.

4- Yelp

In my previous blog, "Will Google Purchase Yelp To Create Its Own Foursquare," I felt strongly that Google was coveting this acquisition to get a more solid foothold in the location-based service space - a nut it hasn't been able to crack (even with its own LBS Latitude). While such a marriage would have added to Google's stock price, now it appears that Yelp might be prime to go public on its own. In order for Yelp's founders to walk away from a $500+ million deal with the social engine giant, this does seem to indicate that the shareholders of this local community Web powerhouse might be seeking an IPO opportunity, in advance of Foursquare gaining any more ground in geolocation technology - which, if that happens could undermine its chances.

5- Zynga
One of the more controversial IPO contenders is Zynga. On December 16, Russia's Digital Sky Technologies which has a stake in Facebook (see above), and other investors have bought $180 of securities in social game company Zynga according to Chief Executive Mark Pincus. Industry analysts have speculated that Zynga could raise $1 to $1.2 billion in an IPO. Zynga makes games played by members of Internet social networks like Facebook an MySpace, and profits by selling add-on tools and "virtual goods." In my blog, "Scamville? A New Online Game? Who's Up For The Challenge?" I followed up Techcrunch's Michael Arrington's harsh criticism of Zynga's "scam-laden lead gen-type offers."  This was followed up by a Time Magazine expose' in November titled, "Troubling Rise of Top Game Company."

But as we all know, controversy is good for a company that is looking to scale its membership base quickly. And as of September according to both Inside Facebook's AppData and Developers Analytics, Zyngas boasts 129 million active users across its portfolio of more than 30 games.

The list above are the most likely to go public if the economy continues to stabilize. Other social media companies which might tap the public markets include  YouTube,  Delicious,  Digg,  StumbleUpon, Flickr and Technorati.

Now, do take our Top Social Media IPO Contender POLL (below) and let us know your favorite(s). You can vote for more than one or ALL or NONE. Or if we left one out that you think will definitely go public in 2010, please list it in the COMMENT section below.

Happy Investing!

Please sign up to get my latest updates here.

Ron Callari
Social Media Trends
Follow me on Twitter

Jan 3, 2010
by Anonymous

Top Social Media IPO Contenders

Here we go again. Just a repeat of the punk IPO genius investor Motley Fool produce nothing but more speculation built on thin air new economy FARCE!  What happened to the new economy of the dotcom stocks and all those darling IPO's? It disappeared like anything does with no foundation.