Facebook Inc. is close to choosing between Google Inc. and Microsoft Corp. to sell ads for the social networking service outside the U.S., according to people familiar with the matter.
In a related negotiation, the winner of the international ad sales partnership is expected to buy a minority stake in Facebook along with financial investors as part of a financing round, these people say. The companies have discussed a valuation for the closely-held startup in the range of $15 billion. A Facebook spokeswoman and a Google spokesman declined to comment. A spokesman for Microsoft could not immediately be reached.