Bono probably made no more than ten million from Facebook IPO

By | Published on Tuesday 22 May 2012


Glenn Peoples at Billboard has done the maths, and reckons that Bono will make no more than $10 million as a result of Facebook’s IPO last Friday, which is still an awful lot of money, but not the $1.5 billion some claimed the U2 frontman would pocket as a result of the social network’s share sale last week.

As previously reported, as various media claimed Bono could be making $1.5 billion from the Facebook flotation, noting that would make him the world’s wealthiest pop star, ahead even of Paul McCartney, many took to Twitter wondering whether the rocker would practice what he preaches, and give his new found wealth away to charities combating poverty around the world.

But as we noted yesterday, while the IPO valuation of Facebook on Friday may have meant the stake Bono’s investment outfit Elevation Partners bought in the social network in 2009 was now worth $1.5 billion, the U2 man’s personal windfall would very much depend on various factors – in particular how many of its shares Elevation sold, and how much of any share sale loot would be passed back to the investment firm’s owners.

According to Peoples’ digging, Elevation only sold about 11.5% of its stake in Facebook, Bono is one of seven partners in the firm, and profits from deals like this will be shared amongst a whole community of investors so the rocker’s personal windfall will be much more modest than $1.5 billion.

There’s an element of guess work to be done too, because even if you can work out – as Peoples does – that Elevation probably made about $30 million from the deal, you can’t know for certain how much of that would reach Bono’s bank account. The Billboard digger reckons anything from $4 million to $10 million.

You can check People’s full analysis at this URL. Meanwhile, the social network’s first full day of trading saw shares in the company slip, as low as $33 at one point (they went on the market at $38) before closing the day at $34.03.