It’s official; WhatsApp is now a part of Facebook. After months of speculations, the social networking giant has finally acquired the mobile messaging service on Monday for a whopping $22 billion. This amount is $3 billion more than the amount Facebook originally agreed to pay to takeover WhatsApp; this increase in price has taken place due to sharp rise in the value of Facebook’s stocks in the past few months.
According to Monday’s regulatory filing, Jan Koum, the founder of WhatsApp, will be receiving around $2 billion in the form of stocks over a 4-year period for staying with the company. Koum will be serving as WhatsApp’s CEO and will also be appointed as a director of Facebook.
Koum’s annual salary will be same as that of Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerburg i.e. $1. The WhatsApp boss will be treated with 24.9 million restricted stock units belonging to the social networking giant (the current value of 24.9 billion Facebook stock units is around $1.9 billion).
To acquire WhatsApp, Facebook has reportedly shelled out $4.56 billion in cash; in addition, it has forfeited 178 million shares and 46 million grants from its restricted stock units for employees who will continue to be a part of WhatsApp for the coming 4 years. If calculated based on the opening share price of Facebook in the United States on Monday, the deal has a total value of $21.8 billion.
Facebook announced that it is going to acquire WhatsApp almost six months back; the social networking behemoth, however, obtained regulatory approval from the European authorities only on Friday, October 3. The acquisition was approved by the US regulators way back in April; it must be noted here that the regulatory body in the United States warned Facebook that after the acquisition it will need to follow the WhatsApp’s strict privacy policies.
WhatsApp also said that it never forces any of its users to disclose their name, email address, or any other personal info and things will remain the same even after it becomes a Facebook property.
The eventual completion of the deal shows how fast the Internet start-ups are growing and how much they are appealing to big players like Google and Facebook.
Right now WhatsApp has over 600 million monthly active users. This makes it one of the most popular social media and mobile messaging app currently in use. The app is particularly loved by young users