The day Facebook bought SMS

Facebook bought messaging platform WhatsApp for $16+ billion. A huge amount of money by all accounts; an extremely bold and strategic move by Mark Zuckerberg, a guy who doesn’t knock around with innovator’s dilemma.

There comes a moment when you’re that big a company when you need to keep growing. A tipping point of sorts, when you either hunt or become the hunted. Facebook has completely dominated the developed/western world market with more than 1.5 billion users and naturally needs to expand to something beyond it in order to keep the growth rates coming.

Emerging markets—despite being often overvalued, sometimes overlooked, and others ignored—are the next big thing and in Facebook’s case the next “1 billion connected people.” Facebook’s core mission and Mark Zuckerberg’s personal raison d’être. WhatsApp has a monumental global presence and is the clear “messaging platform wars” winner.

TechCrunch’s Matthew Panzarino:

Instagram’s $1 billion sounds really lame now.

Update: Also relevant: Four numbers that explain why Facebook bought WhatsApp courtesy of Sequoia Capital, WhatsApp’s investors.

posted: February 20, 2014
under: Mobile

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