An App that almost all with a smart phone can’t live without has had great news yesterday (19th Feb) as Facebook plans to acquire WhatsApp for a deal worth $19 Billion. Yes, you read it right, $19 Billion! With an unprecedented 400 Million active users, it is a strategic acquisition by Facebook to further enhance its reach towards the teen and smartphone users.
The co-founders and story of never giving up
Jan Koum and Brian Acton co founded WhatsApp in 2009. Brian Acton was actually turned down by Facebook in August 2009 as visible from his tweet back then.
Few months earlier to this, he was also turned down by Twitter.
Mark Zuckerberg comments on the acquisition
“I’ve known Jan for a long time and I’m excited to partner with him and his team to make the world more open and connected. The growth rate they have today and the monetization that’s early but promising and in place, we see a clear trajectory ahead and are excited to work together on this.” – Zuckerberg
What to expect for the WhatsApp users in near future?
Well, Facebook isn’t just giving money away and will ensure that it earns back the money spent, so expect to see Facebook Ads appearing on an updated App version of WhatsApp. This sure is a blow to Google who has been dominating the ads sphere online. Koum though believes that the acquisition won’t change much in terms of Ads
“We think that for our product, advertising is not necessarily the right way to go. We think we have a very solid monetization system in place.” – Jan Koum
The development for such Apps is encouraging for all entrepreneurs and we should see more such big swallowing in the near future by the Big 4 (Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo).