Investment banking giant Goldman Sachs will sell shares of social networking site Facebook only to non-U.S. investors, a move aimed at complying with American laws.

Goldman plans to raise up to $1.5 billion through private placement of Facebook shares.

“Goldman Sachs concluded the level of media attention might not be consistent with the proper completion of a U.S. private placement under U.S. law,” Goldman Sachs said in a statement on Monday.

As per American laws, private placement of shares such as that of the proposed Facebook deal cannot be the topic of advertising, among others.

“Goldman Sachs originally intended to conduct a private placement in the U.S. and offshore to investors interested in Facebook.

“In light of this intense media coverage, Goldman Sachs decided to proceed only with the offer to investors outside the U.S.,” the statement noted.

According to Goldman Sachs, this decision was its own and not due to request from any other party.

Going by reports, Goldman Sachs along with Russia’s Digital Sky Technologies have already pumped in $500 million in Facebook. The private placement of Facebook shares would be in addition to the existing investment.

Facebook is estimated to have over 600 million users worldwide and many of them are outside the U.S.

Late last year, Goldman had reached a $550-million settlement with market regulator U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) related to sale of a mortgage-related product to investors.


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