Facebook has received US approval for its acquisition of WhatsApp, whose founder, Jan Koum, has been appointed to the Facebook board. The cost of the acquisition has also risen to $22bn, due to Facebook's own share price rising.
The merger of mobile messaging start-up WhatsApp into Facebook's corporate fold began on 19 February, when agreements were reached between the two companies.
Facebook recently gained approval from the European Commission to proceed with the deal, which will cost the social networking giant $22bn - its biggest acquisition since buying virtual reality firm Oculus Rift for $2bn.
This is an increase on the $19bn initially announced as Facebook's share price has risen since the deal was first announced. Overall Facebook will pay $4.59bn in cash and 177,760,669 shares in the company, which have risen to $77 since February.
It will also hand over shares worth $3.5bn to employees of Whatsapp.
The Commission did ponder concerns over Facebook holding a monopoly in the mobile messaging market, but it was decided that Facebook's own messaging app did not compete with WhatsApp's services, and that the company was not absorbing a rival.
In a statement sent to V3, a Facebook spokesperson said: "We are looking forward to connecting even more people around the world, and continuing to create value for the people who use WhatsApp."
Other than the above statement, Facebook appears to be keeping quiet about its plans for WhatsApp.
Other companies providing mobile messaging services are likely to be concerned now that WhatsApp now has the might of Facebook behind it.
Back when the merger was first agreed, Koum said in a conference call that WhatsApp would operate "independently and autonomously" from Facebook, and would remain a user-centric service with "no ads, no games, no gimmicks".
However, time will tell whether Facebook will impose some of its advertising clout over the free mobile messaging service, particularly when ad revenues fuel a vast proportion of Facebook's income.
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