Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Saturday 19 June |
Saint of the Day: St. Romuald
home iconLifestyle
line break icon

The $19 Billion WhatsApp Acquisition Stunner: The Reaction on Twitter

Technicia Studios

<a href=""></a>

Brantly Millegan - published on 02/20/14

Wait until you read about the incredible story of the founders.

If you haven’t already heard, here’s a shocker for the day: Facebook is buying the messaging app WhatsApp for $19 billion. Yes, billion.

Haven’t even heard of it? That’s okay: although it has 450 million users, it’s mostly popular overseas. The app, which is free for the first year and then $1 a year after that, allows users to send text messages, pictures, videos, and make calls. If you’re thinking that smartphones can already do that, remember that all of those features normally require fees from cell phone carriers, particularly if you are communicating internationally. WhatsApp, and an array of other apps like it, uses the Internet and avoids the carriers, saving users lots of money.

WhatsApp’s $19 billion price tag is the most Facebook (or Google, Microsoft, and Apple) has ever paid for an acquisition, it’s 19 times more than Facebook paid for Instagram (remember how shocking that was?), and about 5 times what it offered for SnapChat.

Twitter has been ablaze with reactions. Here are some of the most interesting:

Here is an amazing chart showing why #facebook spent so much on #whatsapp

— Valued Merchants (@ValuedMerchants) February 20, 2014
Epic. WhatsApp valued at more than American Airlines, Harley Davidson, Starwood Hotels, Campbell Soup, Xerox…

— Josh Constine (@JoshConstine) February 20, 2014
The mind-blowing WhatsApp purchase shows that Zuckerberg really does want to control the internet

— Damian Thompson (@holysmoke) February 20, 2014
Whatsapp acq another example of “never heard of it, must not be big” = WRONG

— Hunter Walk (@hunterwalk) February 20, 2014
WhatsApp is another reminder from Silicon Valley that immigration is what makes America America

— Matt O’Brien (@ObsoleteDogma) February 20, 2014
Facebook & WhatsApp: biggest Internet deal since Time Warner’s $124 billion merger with AOL in ’01

— Tim O’Brien (@TimOBrien) February 20, 2014

But two of the most interesting tweets have to do with the pasts of the co-founders, Jan Koum and Brian Acton.
Whatsapp’s Jan Koum signs Facebook deal in front of Bay Area social services office where he used to get food stamps

— Ryan Mac (@RMac18) February 20, 2014
Facebook turned me down. It was a great opportunity to connect with some fantastic people. Looking forward to life’s next adventure.

— Brian Acton (@brianacton) August 3, 2009

In the first one, Jan Koum is signing the deal with Facebook at a “social services office where he used to get food stamps.” In the second, the key thing to notice is that the tweet is from 2009, the same year that Acton co-founded WhatsApp with Koum. Apparently Acton had applied for a job at Facebook and was turned down and was wondering where his life would go next.

Now there are some life lessons for ya.

Social Media
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Lords' Prayer
Philip Kosloski
What does “hallowed be thy name” mean in the Our Fath...
Cerith Gardiner
Nightbirde’s deep faith shines in her viral performance on ...
Zelda Caldwell
Catholic priest’s chapel is finalist in “Shed of the Year&#...
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition
Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, East London Gospel Choir
J-P Mauro
Hear Clapton and Pavarotti sing a prayer to the “Holy Mothe...
Philip Kosloski
Who started the Catholic Church?
4 Phrases about Jesus that you should never say to your child
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.