Mark Zuckerberg, who founded Facebook in 2004 in his dorm room at Harvard University, is expected to lodge a filing to sell shares to the public when the US stock market opens later today.
The filing with US regulators will give a first glimpse into the finances of the company that has grown to more than 800m users worldwide in less than a decade.
Over that time, it has faced criticism over the use of the personal data of its members, and even had Oscar-winning movie The Social Network made about the row that surrounded its foundation.
Reports about the possible initial public offering (IPO) started circulating as early as last summer, with widespread speculation that Facebook will raise up to $10bn from the action.
This would represent the biggest public float by a technology company in US history, while the funds raised would dwarf the $1.67bn generated by Google's float in 2004.
It will also provide a massive windfall for the investment banks advising Zuckerberg and his senior team. Morgan Stanley is widely expected to be involved, as it assisted business networking site LinkedIn and video game maker Zynga when they went public last year. Goldman Sachs is also likely to be working with Facebook.
Much attention has focused on how rich Zuckerberg will become after the float, and certainly he will have a paper profit going into several billions of dollars.
But the chief executive of Facebook will also face various challenges after the firm goes public, particularly the pressure of ensuring the company's quarterly results meet, or even exceed, the expectations of investors and Wall Street.
Facebook will have a multi-billion dollar fighting fund with which to continue its efforts to become a platform where people spend a significant majority of their time online, including the addition of various entertainment and web services.
This process will please investors by driving up online advertising revenues, but Facebook will have to tread a careful balance in not alienating its users, the real currency of its business, in the drive to make money.
It is widely expected that Facebook will have valuation of between $75bn to $100bn in the IPO. Even at the lower end, this would value the company at worth more than Disney.
Facebook recently rose to a 16.3% share of the online display advertising market, overtaking Yahoo, but according to eMarketer, the firm's ad revenue is predicted to only grow to around $7bn by 2013. This compares to Disney's revenues of over $40bn last year.
One person unlikely to be among the queue of investors in Facebook is Rupert Murdoch, after the News Corporation boss questioned the company's expected valuation.
Earlier in the week, the billionaire tweeted: "Facebook a brilliant achievement, but $75-100bn? Would make Apple look really cheap."
However, Murdoch also recently admitted to have "screwed up" MySpace "in every single way", after News Corp took a massive loss in offloading the social networking pioneer.