Facebook Buys “WhatsApp ” For $19 Billion. What Does This Mean For BlackBerry and BBM?

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WhatsApp is adding about a million users per day, Facebook co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg said on his page on Wednesday.

“WhatsApp will complement our existing chat and messaging services to provide new tools for our community,” he wrote on his Facebook page. “Since WhatsApp and (Facebook) Messenger serve such different and important users, we will continue investing in both.” *

Facebook gave the following reasons for wanting to purchase WhatsApp:

Over 450 million people using the service each month;

70% of those people active on a given day;

Messaging volume approaching the entire global telecom SMS volume;

Continued strong growth, currently adding more than 1 million new registered users per day.

Let’s compare this to the latest known BBM stats:

More than 100 million active users each month (BlackBerry 10, iOS, and Android);

More than 51 million daily active users who are connecting with friends or colleagues an average of one and a half hours every day;

BBM users send and receive more than 10 billion messages each day, nearly twice as many messages per user per day as compared to other mobile messaging apps;

Almost half of BBM messages are read within 20 seconds of being received indicating how truly engaged BBM customers are with BBM

With this market valuation of “WhatsApp”, what does this mean for BlackBerry and its recently introduced cross platform BBM  messaging, and as of the last few days, its BBM Channels update for Android and iPhone devices?

BBM has video, screen sharing, Glimpse location service, Channels….its much better than Whatsapp. If we value it at hhalf then is BBM worth 9.5B on its own now?

The Facebook deal for WhatsApp, with more than 450 million monthly users, implies a valuation of about US$3.4 billion for BlackBerry’s BBM service, which has 80 million monthly users. BlackBerry Chief Executive Officer John Chen, named to run the company in November after a scrapped sale attempt, has singled out BBM as a pillar for growth to help revive the struggling smartphone maker. BlackBerry has a market value of US$4.7 billion.

“Facebook’s rich valuation per user for WhatsApp confirms that instant-messaging apps lead the next Internet gold rush,” said Praveen Menon, an Internet analyst with Bloomberg Industries. “The steep valuation could be a positive signal for rival messaging apps such as WeChat, Line and Kakao, as well as BlackBerry’s BBM service.”+

* photo and news source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/19/us-whatsapp-facebook-idUSBREA1I26B20140219

+ http://business.financialpost.com/2014/02/20/facebook-whatsapp-deal-gives-blackberry-ltd-huge-boost-as-takeover-confirms-messaging-will-lead-next-internet-gold-rush/

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