Question of the Week: Why Is Facebook Taking So Long to Go Public? UPDATED with Poll Results

(Update: Poll results added to bottom of story.)

Yesterday, the Financial Times reported that Facebook is preparing to launch its IPO towards the end of 2012. The offering, which is expected to be one of the world’s biggest, had been seen coming in April 2012. Some even hoped that it would happen this year.

But Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, is the buzz kill, apparently. The FT reported that Zuckerberg wants to hold off on an IPO for at least a year so that Facebook’s employees will stay focused on product developments rather than a payout.

Sounds like a reasonable explanation, but the conspiracy theorist in us wonders if there’s more to the story. We wonder, for example, if the real reason for the delay is because Facebook’s financials aren’t as strong as company sources have said they are.

Reuters reported last week the privately held company’s revenue doubled to $1.6 billion in the first half of this year and that its H1 net income was about $500 million. Those numbers sound good, but some have questioned how much of Facebook’s revenue comes from its partnership with social game maker Zynga as opposed to, say, advertisements. Could it be that Facebook needs time to diversify its sources of revenue?

What do you think? Do you believe the reported explanation from Zuckerberg, or do you think we haven’t been told the whole story?

NOTE: Poll has been closed. The results are as follows: