Everybody has been talking about the WhatsApp-Facebook deal.
The $19 billion dollar acquisition is certainly no joke. In fact, many consider it a landmark. This is one of the largest tech acquisitions, and there are some interesting facts about it that are still little known. Here is what you may have missed, or never even heard, about the deal.
WhatsApp is Facebook’s Largest Acquisition
Facebook has been shopping for a while, and it has acquired many different startups, including recently acquired Oculus. WhatsApp is clearly Facebook’s largest acquisition ever. To get WhatsApp, Facebook has paid $4 billion in cash, and a whopping and $12 billion in shares. Apart from this, the employees and founders of WhatsApp have also received an additional $3 billion worth of restricted stock units in Facebook. This is much, much more than what Facebook paid for one of its most popular acquisitions – Instagram.
WhatsApp’s Deal is bigger than Any Other Tech Deal
All tech giants keep acquiring startups that show promise, but WhatsApp’s acquisition is one of the biggest deals that the global IT industry has ever seen. In fact, it is a larger acquisition than anything that Microsoft, Google, or even Apple has ever made. Until now, the largest acquisition was Google’s takeover of Motorola Mobility, pegged at $12.5 billion. Microsoft’s biggest acquisition until date has been that of Skype for $8.5 billion and Apple has never ever acquired anything for more than a $1 billion.
The Deal Took 2 Years to Come Through
Facebook had first made an offer to buy out WhatsApp, when it was still a fledgling, in 2012. Then, Facebook had offered to pay $2 billion for the buyout. The informal discussions between Facebook and WhatsApp have been ongoing since then. However, the current deal only started shaping up in February 2014, when the founders of WhatsApp finally could not turn their backs on the whopping offer that was placed to them.
There Was an Offer from Google
Google had also made an offer to WhatsApp, but not what many would believe it to be. What Google wanted from WhatsApp was money, in exchange for the right to be notified if it ever got an offer to be acquired. WhatsApp promptly turned down this offer and another offer from Google, who later offered to pay $10 billion to buy the company outright. It is believed that WhatsApp turned down the offer because it did not include a seat for Jan Koum – WhatsApp’s co-founder, on Google’s board. This requirement was later fulfilled by Facebook in its offer.
WhatsApp’s Co-Founder Was Denied a Job at Facebook
Before WhatsApp’s co-founder Brian Acton founded Facebook, he applied for a job at Facebook in 2009. He failed to get a job and his application was rejected. Who knew back then, that bigger things awaited him? He was a little upset about not making the cut, but his Twitter posts suggest that he took it sportingly and claimed to be looking forward to life’s next adventure.