Facebook Acquires WhatsApp for Staggering $16 Billion


Texting: Now worth 10x Youtube

In SEC filings released today, Facebook is acquiring cross-platform mobile messaging startup WhatsApp for a monumental $16 billion, almost ten times the acquisition price of Google’s $1.65 billion acquisition of YouTube.

WhatsApp is a widely used messaging app that circumvents the fees imposed by SMS, along with the platform lock-in on networks like BBM and iMessage. According to the filings, WhatsApp enjoys over 450 million monthly users, 70% of whom access the service every day.

Jan Koum, WhatsApp co-founder and CEO, said, “WhatsApp’s extremely high user engagement and rapid growth are driven by the simple, powerful and instantaneous messaging capabilities we provide. We’re excited and honored to partner with Mark and Facebook as we continue to bring our product to more people around the world.”

The acquisition is the latest in Facebook’s foray into mobile, following the $1 billion purchase of Instagram, along with its in-house launch of the critically acclaimed Paper app for iOS.

Almost half of Facebook users access the service exclusively through mobile, reports TechCrunch. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, has called the social network “a mobile company now,” and the latest purchase of WhatsApp signals the company’s redoubled commitment to the space.

Founder Stories: Razvan Roman & Radu Spineanu, Co-Founders, Amber.io

amber.io is an API that places orders on ecommerce platforms. App developers or publishers can allow their users to order millions of products from 3rd party retailers without leaving the app. Co-Founders Radu Spineanu and Radu Spineanu join us to talk about their company, the vision, and the process of building companies both in Romania (where they’re from) and Silicon Valley (where they’ve moved).

“Roadkill one and all.”

Maybe our cutomers will buy these again if we added a Facebook.

Maybe our cutomers will buy these again if we add a Facebook.

Citing Microsoft’s $9 billion acquisition of Nokia, Lead Systems Engineer at Climate Corporation, Nathan Mehl, comments via Facebook,

Mark it: _every_ single major player in the cell phone / mobile industry at the time of the iPhone’s introduction is now gone or on life support: Nokia, Motorola, Palm, RIM/Blackberry, Danger, HTC. Roadkill one and all.

One iPhone to rule them all…

Anne Ward: “If you’re not shareable on mobile, you’re not shareable period.”

Just as companies started wrapping their heads around the interwebs, the mobile web showed up, and changed everything.

“Whether or not you want yourself to be on mobile, your clients do,” says Anne Ward, Editor in Chief of Mobile FOMO, who joins us for our newest episode of @sfbeta On Air. Mobile FOMO a blog and media site that outlines trends, strategies, tips & tricks, and cutting-edge insight into the world of mobile metrics, marketing, and performance.

We discuss a number of topics, from the importance of a mobile-optimized landing page, to a Responsive wordpress theme, to the importance of collecting and measuring data. We mentioned a number of startups, including Kissmetrics, Appsocial.ly, and Retailigence.