Facebook has nabbed $450 million in funding from investment bank Goldman Sachs that values the social networking company at $50 billion, the New York Times reported Monday.
The company also took a $50-million investment from Russian firm Digital Sky Technologies, which has already invested some $500 million in Facebook.
News of the investment came just days after the site was named as the most popular site in the US in 2010 as well as the most searched-for term. The company last year passed the 500 million member mark.
The investment makes the privately held Facebook worth more than media conglomerate Time Warner and tech titans Yahoo and eBay.
It also ups the fortune of Facebook’s 26-year-old founder Marc Zuckerberg, who was reckoned to be worth some $7 billion when his company’s valuation was estimated at $23 billion last year.
According to the Times, Goldman Sachs is planning to offer its Facebook shares to its clients as part of a $1.5-billion investment fund.
The report said that the money will give Facebook more firepower to lure employees from rivals such as Google, “develop new products and possibly pursue acquisitions – all without being a publicly traded company”.