Wow.. Facebook has entered into an agreement to purchase the mobile messaging app WhatsApp for $12 billion in stock and $4 billion in cash. That’s an impressive number. The cash amount alone would weigh over 88.000 pounds in $100 bills. On top of all that, Facebook puts aside another $3 billion for restricted stock grants for WhatsApp employees.
How is that amount justified? Well, Whatsapp has an insanely big user base. It has over 400 million monthly active users. In the press release announcing the news, Mark Zuckerberg also said, “WhatsApp is on a path to connect 1 billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable”. Read the whole press release here.
Are there any consequences for all the WhatsApp users? According to Whatsapp’s statement on their company blog, there won’t be any changes:
Almost five years ago we started WhatsApp with a simple mission: building a cool product used globally by everybody. Nothing else mattered to us.
Today we are announcing a partnership with Facebook that will allow us to continue on that simple mission. Doing this will give WhatsApp the flexibility to grow and expand, while giving me, Brian, and the rest of our team more time to focus on building a communications service that’s as fast, affordable and personal as possible.
Here’s what will change for you, our users: nothing.
WhatsApp will remain autonomous and operate independently. You can continue to enjoy the service for a nominal fee. You can continue to use WhatsApp no matter where in the world you are, or what smartphone you’re using. And you can still count on absolutely no ads interrupting your communication. There would have been no partnership between our two companies if we had to compromise on the core principles that will always define our company, our vision and our product.
It is too early to say if it’s really true that WhatsApp will remain the app it is today. We are curious to see the development in the coming days.