Well, this is certainly an interesting development. Facebook has acquired Instagram for the rumored price in the neighborhood of $1 billion. With the Facebook IPO looking to happen next month maybe Mark Zuckerberg felt it was best to make this purchase without having to answer to those pesky shareholders.
Zuckerberg shared the news on Facebook (of course!)
I’m excited to share the news that we’ve agreed to acquire Instagram and that their talented team will be joining Facebook.
For years, we’ve focused on building the best experience for sharing photos with your friends and family. Now, we’ll be able to work even more closely with the Instagram team to also offer the best experiences for sharing beautiful mobile photos with people based on your interests.
We believe these are different experiences that complement each other. But in order to do this well, we need to be mindful about keeping and building on Instagram’s strengths and features rather than just trying to integrate everything into Facebook.
The post goes on to say that Facebook is committed to growing Instagram independently and gives assurances that Instagram’s ability to integrate with other social networks will not be impeded.
This does seem to be a very unique situation and move for Facebook. Zuckerberg closes his post with
This is an important milestone for Facebook because it’s the first time we’ve ever acquired a product and company with so many users. We don’t plan on doing many more of these, if any at all. But providing the best photo sharing experience is one reason why so many people love Facebook and we knew it would be worth bringing these two companies together.
We’re looking forward to working with the Instagram team and to all of the great new experiences we’re going to be able to build together.
Right now this is just an event. What it means for social and photo sharing will be felt further down the road. But $1 billion? Yikes.