Facebook has set its share price for its stock market launch on Friday, valuing the company at $104 billion.

The shares, priced at $38 (£24) a pop, will go on sale on the Nasdaq exchange, giving you a chance to own a piece of the social network.

The news means that Facebook will raise some $16bn to invest in making the site even better and makes it one of the biggest stock market launches in American history.

"Facebook today announced the pricing of its initial public offering [IPO] of 421,233,615 shares of its common stock at a price to the public of $38 per share," a company statement said.

"The shares are expected to begin trading on the Nasdaq Global Select Market on May 18, 2012, under the symbol 'FB'.

"Facebook is offering 180,000,000 shares of Class A common stock and selling stockholders are offering 241,233,615 shares of Class A common stock. Closing of the offering is expected to occur on May 22, 2012, subject to customary closing conditions."

Many in the industry have voiced concerned over how the shares will perform on the opening day and how the company will perform in general in the future as it tries to make money from its 900 million users. Car manufacturer GM announced this week that it was pulling its $10m advertising spend from the site because it wasn't very effective.

That's unlikely to deter investors keen for a piece of "the facebook" who will no doubt charge the stock exchange tomorrow to snap up a piece of the internet giant that buys $1bn companies at the drop of a hat over a weekend business meeting (yes, we are talking Instagram).

Still a quick straw poll over almost 500 people (at time of writing) at facebookipodayclosingprice.com suggests those investors shouldn't have anything to worry about. The general consensus there is that the share price will end the day at $54, meaning if you can get in quick you could stand to make quiet a lot of money if the prediction pans out.

Mark Zuckerberg is expected to make $18bn from the IPO.