The web giant revealed the confidential filing on its own Twitter account, announcing that it had filed paperwork with US regulators.
Goldman Sachs will be the lead underwriter in the IPO, which is now expected in the first quarter of 2014.
Twitter is estimated to be worth at least $10bn (£6.32bn), according to investor GSV Capital’s valuation of its own shares in the company.
Revenues last year were estimated by analysts to be around $350m, but were expected to rise sharply this year.
However, Twitter’s filing last night was confidential, something allowed by The Securities and Exchanges Commission under the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act.
It means that firms considered as “emerging growth” with less than $1bn (£632m) in annual revenue can register a public share sale without publishing details of the application.
Such firms only have to provide two years of financial data, and can reveal detailed information on the filing only three weeks before the float. Twitter, which was founded by Jack Dorsey in 2006, has racked up over 500m registered accounts in just seven years, and over 200m active users.
Max Wolff, an analyst at Greencrest Capital, says that Twitter, which allows users to send out streams of 140-character messages, is on track for 40 per cent annual growth: “It’s completely conquered mobile.
“It has an enormous social network. It’s becoming a key utility as a second screen to TV and it’s literally the first draft of history,” Wolff said. “Normally a company like Twitter would have been public for some time.”