How's this for a powerful communications channel?
Facebook is placing a $19 billion bet on reaching its next billion mobile users with the acquisition of WhatsApp, a popular disappearing messaging service that lets people send texts, photos and videos on their smartphones.
CTV News reports that Facebook is taking the long view in acquiring the company, and outlines some of the staggering assets that WhatsApp can boast, such as 450 million monthly users, 70 percent of whom use it every day.
The service is adding a million new users a day. There are 19 billion messages sent and 34 billion received via WhatsApp each day, in addition to 600 million photos and 100 million video messages.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is confident the app will reach a billion users. Services that reach that milestone, Zuckerberg said in a statement, "are all incredibly valuable."
Facebook is paying $12 billion in stock and $4 billion in cash for WhatsApp. In addition, the app's founders and employees — just 55 in all — will be granted restricted stock worth $3 billion that will vest over four years after the deal closes.
The transaction translates to roughly 11 percent of Facebook's market value.
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