Facebook IPO Legal Fees Hit $2.6M for Fenwick and West

By Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. on May 21, 2012 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Ever wonder what it cost to take a company public? Well, if it's of the same size and notoriety as Facebook, roughly $2.6 million.

Fenwick & West's Silicon Valley office was tapped to head Facebook's initial public offering back in February, and according to new regulatory figures, the social network expects to pay the firm approximately $2.6 million.

Partners Gordon Davidson and Jeffrey Vetter and associate James Evans must be very happy.

So must be partners William H. Hinman, Jr. and Daniel N. Webb of Simpson Thacher -- they're representing IPO underwriters Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Barclays and JPMorgan Chase.

It was no surprise to people familiar with Facebook that Fenwick & West got the deal; they've represented the company for years. Fenwick led the site's purchase of a mobile application developer and a $200 million investment by Digital Sky Technologies, according to Legal Week.

And more recently? Fenwick was at Facebook's side during April's $1 billion Instagram purchase. It was also heavily involved in last month's purchase of an AOL patent portfolio from Microsoft. Both purchases are widely believed to be related to the looming IPO.

It's unclear how much Facebook paid for these additional services, but chances are they were quite hefty. And that the sums didn't particularly bother the Facebook powers that be. With an IPO in the billions -- and an overall worth nearing $100 billion -- Facebook can afford the steep legal fees.

The rest of the business world? These days, probably not.

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