Facebook IPO Speculation Heats Up
Media reports surfaced this week that Facebook is gearing up for an initial public offering sometime before April. The leading social network, with 800 million users, is expected to raise $10 billion through the IPO, a record-high for a tech company. Last January, Facebook announced it would be required by U.S. regulators to disclose its finances by April 30, 2012, if it doesn’t go public by then, which now appears likely. According to reports, Facebook is increasing its focus on mobile technology as it looks to leverage the consumer shift to smartphones and tablets. The company expects its next 1 billion users to come mainly from mobile devices, rather than desktop computers. (Washington Post)
LivingSocial Hires Away Top Tech Executive at Citi
Online daily deals site LivingSocial is attracting top executive talent, a sign that the company is looking to solidify its place in the industry that includes Groupon and number of others. Dickson Chu, who most recently directed the development of new payments capabilities for mobile, online and tech companies for Citi, has been named as senior vice president for merchant solutions with LivingSocial. At PayPal, before that, Chu was responsible for product strategy and development.
At LivingSocial, Chu will head up the Merchant Solutions division, tasked with the development and marketing of products and services to meet the needs of local merchants. In addition to the Merchant Solutions division, LivingSocial also named current executive Jake Maas as Senior Vice President of Consumer Businesses, covering all consumer-facing products and services, and Eric Eichmann as President of International, directing all of the company's operations outside of North America. The Consumer Businesses division includes the core LivingSocial Daily Deals, as well as new products like Adventures, Escapes, Families, Instant, and Gourmet.
Android Browser Just For Kids
Global software and web services firm Maxthon is releasing an Android browser made for kids. The ‘Maxthon Kids Safe for Android’ lets parents white-list the websites they want to let their kids visit. Proprietary technology then blocks unwanted search results and off-site linking to keep kids browsing within a parent-approved set of web domains.
The new browser will be found on the first Android tablet designed and programmed expressly for kids, the Nabi, which will be exclusively available at Toys 'R' Us on Dec. 7. Consumers can preorder the $199 tablet on the retailer’s website. Along with its own app store, Nabi also has an extensive library of creative and educational content from the Fooz Kids University with thousands of math problems and thousands of practice questions.