Bloomberg News

Facebook Gets State Approval to Issue Shares for Instagram

August 29, 2012

Facebook Inc. (FB:US) received approval from the California Department of Corporations for its planned acquisition of Instagram Inc., helping clear the way for the world’s most popular social network to complete the purchase.

Facebook can issue shares to buy the mobile photo-sharing application, said Rafael Lirag, hearing officer at a fairness hearing in San Francisco today. The deal is “fair, just and equitable,” and a permit will be issued to enable the share transfer, he said.

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission granted antitrust approval for the acquisition last week. The deal, which includes about 23 million shares and $300 million in cash, is valued at about $740 million.

Facebook is buying Instagram to bolster its presence on mobile devices, where it needs to boost advertising dollars. Facebook gets more than half of its users from wireless devices such as smartphones and tablets, yet growth in mobile advertising hasn’t kept pace with the surge in members.

Shares of Facebook, based in Menlo Park, California, fell 1.2 percent to $19.10 at the close in New York. The stock has dropped 50 percent from an initial public offering price of $38 in May.

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian Womack in San Francisco at bwomack1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net


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