Snapchat, a messaging services that provides quick text and photo messages that disappear after viewing rather than store themselves on the user’s phone, has turned down Facebook in an offer for acquisition of more than $3 billion.
The app has been gaining a great deal of traction for its privacy features. The messages sent only remain on the screen long enough to be read by the user, and then disappear. A screencap can be taken to save it, if the user chooses.
Teenagers in particular have been using this service to send messages to and from friends and avoid the risk of it being seen by those who pick up their phone. Recently, they added a new feature that allows the user to string together multiple messages and photos into a “Snapstory” to send selected members on their contact list.
Facebook recently made a bid to the app for acquisition, and sources claim it was for at least $3 billion, though possibly more. Snapchat founder Evan Spiegel rejected the offer.
But the massive social networking site won’t be the first to be rebuffed. Seeing the rapid growth of his app, the 23-year-old co-founder is expecting the estimated value of Snapchat to grow exponentially over the coming year to an even greater sum.
Chinese owned Tencent, a major internet firm with stake in various companies throughout China and South Korea, also made an offer to invest $200 million with a $4 billion valuation. They, too, were denied.
The hold out is definitely justified. Snapchat started with a heavy userbase from the very beginning. But within just a few months the user numbers had doubled, and that number continues to grow.
Just the idea behind Snapchat makes it obvious that the popularity won’t be waning any time soon. Being so young himself, Spiegel has managed to tap into a market immediately embraced by the youth of today. Having no record on the servers or in a person’s phone of messages, unless specifically captured and saved, allows an element of discretion that they have lost since older users adopted social technology.
While no one at the company has made an official comment on the matter, there is sure to be more news soon. Facebook itself has made two different offers in a bid for the app, the first being for a lesser amount of $1 billion.