WhatsApp Inc. was founded in 2009 by American Brian Acton and Ukrainian Jan Koum (also the CEO), both former employees of Yahoo!
Whatsapp sold for $16 billion to Facebook 19th of Feb 2014.
Why did Facebook buy whatsapp?
WhatsApp has more than 450 million active users, and reached that number faster than any other company in history. It was just nine months ago that WhatsApp announced 200 million active users, which was already more than Twitter. Every day, more than a million people install the app and start chatting, and they remain more engaged with WhatsApp than on any other service. Incredibly, the number of daily active users of WhatsApp (compared to those who log in every month) has climbed to 72%. In contrast the industry standard is between 10% and 20%, and only a handful of companies top 50%.
Koum held about a 45% stake in the company, while Acton’s stake was over 20%.
The deal marks what could be one of the most successful venture capital investment deals of all time.
The percentage of WhatsApp owned by Sequoia is+ 20 percent — meaning Sequoia could be reaping as much as $3.2 billion in cash and stock for that initial investment.
Sequoia may have ultimately invested as much as $60 million in WhatsApp, which might be a larger amount the company publicly reported but does nothing to change the epic scale of Sequoia’s financial win.