Some colleagues and I had a briefing with Facebook last week under the premise of "to provide details on an upcoming announcement in late March regarding a key expansion of their services." We discussed an expansion of search and profile capabilities, whereby Facebook was positioning itself to be more generic, in addition to expanding high school targeting.
The funny thing is the last question I asked: "when are you going to merge with another social networking site? I can’t see the differentiation between you and other sites now…sounds like the time is right for consolidation." The response was that Mark fully intended to build the business as a standalone.
Which is technically the truth, just that he wants $2 billion and someone else’s agenda to drive Facebook forward. Not a bad idea, if you can make it happen! Especially because most of the cool kids migrated to myspace a while ago – but a bunch of investment bankers and other assorted suits may not pick up on that until they’ve inked the deal.
Congratulations Mark – and if you want my advice – as Kenny Rogers said, you gotta know when to hold ’em and know when to fold ’em. Don’t hold out too long or else you’re going to be stuck – because the game of musical chairs is starting for Web 2.0 and the losers will be determined by how long the music plays – the longer it goes, the more likely it will be that owners, then VCs, then individual investors will find themselves without a chair.