NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Facebook appear to be heading for new all-time highs Thursday with CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying that a horrendous initial public offering two years ago made his company stronger.
Zuckerberg didn't want to take his company public last year, but he has changed his mind now that the Internet social network's stock is steadily rising.
Shares are up almost 70 percent this year.
"We run our company a lot better now," Zuckerberg said late Wednesday during an onstage interview at the conference put on by AOL Inc.'s TechCrunch blog. "In retrospect, I was too afraid of going public. I have been very outspoken about staying private as long as possible, but I don't think it's that necessary to do that."
Shares rose more than 3 percent to high a new high and it looks like the stock will head into new territory again Thursday.
Company shares bottomed out at $17.55 last September, a big plunge from the IPO price of $45.
Before the opening bell, shares of Facebook Inc. rose almost 1 percent to $45.44. Shares topped out Wednesday at $45.09.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.