Facebook just announced — in a post on Mark Zuckerberg’s profile — that it has bought Instagram for $1 billion dollars in cash and shares. This is Facebook’s largest acquisition to date, coming just ahead of its highly anticipated IPO.
Kevin Systrom, CEO of Instagram, assured fans in his own post that Instagram will remain running and the service is “not going away.” It’s been 551 days since the addictive photo app and social network was born, and the company still has only 13 employees.
Instagram investors have just gotten very lucky, too. According to CNN Money, the company had raised $47 million in venture capital funding — including a recent $40 million round in new funding — bringing the total valuation up to $500 million last month. This means that investors have just gotten a 2x ROI in a few short weeks.
Regarding the app’s evolving features, Zuckerberg says, “We plan on keeping features like the ability to post to other social networks, the ability to not share your Instagrams on Facebook if you want, and the ability to have followers and follow people separately from your friends on Facebook.”