What’s Up With WhatsApp?

WhatsApp LogoSo, the second biggest tech acquisition of all time happened yesterday when Facebook bought WhatsApp for $19 billion.  I’m sure that I’m not the only one who never heard of WhatsApp until this week as this company has pretty much stayed under the radar in the United States.  If you are someone who follows the global trends, then you definitely knew of WhatsApp as they have amassed more than 450 million members over the last 5 years.

For those of you who were caught as off-guard as I was, I have pulled together a series of links to article and analyses on the acquisition from a variety of sources.  I have included excerpts and tidbits that I found most compelling in each article.

WhatsApp is the 2nd Biggest Tech Acquisition of All Time from Business Insider

WhatsApp is the 2nd Largest Tech Acquisition

Why Facebook is Buying WhatsApp from Business Incider

“WhatsApp is the fastest-growing company in history (in terms of users). If the company’s growth continues, and it can continue to “monetize” its users, it will be worth an even more mind-boggling amount of money someday.

The bottom line:  This is a very bold move.”

Facebook Buys WhatsApp for $19B – But Why? from Social Media Today

This is why, according to Social Media Today:

WhatsApp has grown faster in a span of four years than Facebook, Gmail, Skype and Twitter

WhatsApp and Texting Apps Will Drain $33 Billion From Telecoms This Year from Mashable

“U.S. carriers often throw in unlimited texting with their data plans. Abroad, it’s a different story. Since carriers charge for texting, adoption of such work-around apps has risen dramatically. For wireless telecoms, it’s a repeat of the growth of Skype in the 2000s, another workaround that deflated revenues charged for international calls.”

WhatsApp Shows How Phone Carriers Lost Out On $33 Billion from Bloomberg Technology

“In Mexico, for instance, almost 90 percent of all instant messaging goes through WhatsApp, according to Ernesto Piedras, director of the Competitive Intelligence Unit, a telecommunications consulting firm based in Mexico City.”

WhatsApp on LinkedIn

Being the LinkedIn expert that I am, I also researched WhatsApp on LinkedIn.

The company page on LinkedIn WhatsApp is pretty sparse.  Even the profiles for the founders are pretty minimal and spartan:

The press releases made a big deal that WhatsApp does not have very many employees and that is confirmed by looking at the list of just 73 employees who have LinkedIn profiles.

Only time will tell if this is a brilliant move by Facebook or not – and it will be exciting to see how the next 10 years of Facebook turns out.