Just 3 ½ years since its highly scrutinized initial public offering, Facebook is creeping toward a $300 billion valuation. The social media giant languished below its IPO price of $38 per share for more than a year, but has since enjoyed a fast and furious climb toward an elite club.
The stock was trading around $103 on Tuesday, giving Facebook a market cap of $290 billion, hot on the heels of Amazon with a market cap of $293 billion. The only larger tech companies are Microsoft, which has a market cap of $432 billion, Alphabet with a market cap of $507 billion and Apple, which is valued at $687 billion.
Investors are so bullish on Facebook's prospects that the company's stock is trading at almost 20 times revenue — a price-to-sales multiple far above competitors like Apple, Amazon or Alphabet.
The company reports third-quarter 2015 results on Wednesday after the closing bell, and analysts expect revenue of $4.37 billion, up 36 percent year over year, and EPS of 52 cents, up from 43 cents per share a year earlier, according to Thomson Reuters.
"Facebook remains a powerhouse of growth and operating efficiency for investors, and is becoming increasingly important for more and more advertisers as one of online advertising's two hegemonic powers," wrote Pivotal Research analyst Brian Wieser in a note on Oct. 15. The other dominant force Wieser is referring to is, of course, Alphabet's Google.