If you needed (more) proof that Mark Zuckerberg could spend money without blinking an eye, here it is.
Facebook just announced that it's buying the wildly popular messaging service, WhatsApp, for an insane $16 billion. That's 16 times the amount they paid for Instagram roughly a year ago. About $4 billion of that is coming in cash, and $12 billion in stock (also $3 billion in restricted stock options.) As of now, 55 people work at WhatsApp, which, if divided equally between the employees—which likely won't be happening—each employee would make just over $300 million. The messaging service reported that it had about 450 million users as of last month, and is averaging a million new users each day.
“WhatsApp's extremely high user engagement and rapid growth are driven by the simple, powerful and instantaneous messaging capabilities we provide," said WhatsApp co-founder and CEO, Jan Koum, who is now joining the Facebook board. "We're excited and honored to partner with Mark and Facebook as we continue to bring our product to more people around the world.”
"WhatsApp is on a path to connect 1 billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable," said Mark Zuckerberg. "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."
And in related news:
"$16B. Called it." pic.twitter.com/nTaq7v6Uyj— drew olanoff (@drew) February 19, 2014