Brian Acton’s eight year old stint in WhatsApp inc has finally come to end, with the co-founder announcing the news of his departure through a Facebook post on Tuesday. Brain said in the post that he will be starting a new foundation after his departure from WhatsApp, but did not elaborate what this new foundation will be.
Brian (a Stanford alumnus) led an internal engineering team in the instant messaging app company and was reportedly big advocate for WhatsApp’s push into encryption.
He along with his other co-founder Jan Koum also played a critical role in transforming WhatApp from being just another instant messaging app (in 2009) into the world’s most popular app today. WhatApp’s growing popularity apparently gave Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg quite a few sleepless nights. Zuckerberg chose to fix this insomniac problem by acquiring WhatsApp in 2014 for whopping $19 billion in cash and stock deal.
That land mark deal made Brian and Jan overnight billionaires. However, with WhatsApp inc becoming a subsidiary company of Facebook, many analysts argue that Brian and Jan also partly lost their individuality as entrepreneurs.
Nonetheless, what can’t be argued is that both co-founders completely redefined the way people sent & received instant messages. The app single handedly made SMS (Short Message Service), once a popular messaging medium, completely redundant medium today.