Snapchat Creator Values its IPO at $24 Billion

In the largest tech IPO since Alibaba went public in 2014, Snap, the parent company of the immensely popular Snapchat app, will price its offering at $17 per share with a $24 billion valuation.


The company looks to make a tidy profit, announcing that it would sell around 200 million shares, for a total take of about $3.4 billion. Co-founders Evan Spiegel and Bobby Murphy will cash out a combined 32 million shares, netting them each a sum of $272 million. They will retain just under 211 million shares, giving them 88% voting power between them. The remainder of the $3.4 billion that’s being offloaded will be divided among other executives and early investors.


Similarly to Twitter, Snap wasn’t able to turn a profit on its Snapchat app before going public. Moreover, the company’s leadership has stated that it projects its losses to continue to grow going forward. However, in terms of popularity, Snapchat has already surpassed Twitter with 450 million daily users. The company is also beginning to move forward with other products, such as Spectacles — a pair of sunglasses with a built-in camera that streams 10-second video clips to the Snapchat account on your phone.


Stranger still, is that the company is asking a lot of faith from potential investors: the IPO will only be offering non-voting shares, meaning Spiegel and his leadership will be in complete control of the company’s future and direction. Even so, as indicated by the size of the valuation, the company is expecting a lot of investor enthusiasm.


Snap shares will begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange Thursday, March 2nd, under the ticker SNAP.



The Biggest News Story in Social Media This Week

If you missed the latest news in tech, Newsbeat on BBC is a great way to stay in touch. Two days ago, Newsbeat reported breaking news that Snapchat had developed “Memories,” a new update that will give user the ability to use old photos and videos. The update, which builds on current app capabilities that can only hold onto pictures for 24 hours, will potentially have a huge impact on the app that 150 million people use every day.

This app will give people the ability to sift through old photos and combine them into albums that they can share with their friends and family on special occasions in a way that Snapchat was not originally envisioned to. Until now, users have had to save their photos onto their own phones and be willing to take up personal storage space in their phones. They’ve also had to screenshot photos sent to them from friends, which can sometimes be less than desirable when you have that white countdown in the corner of all of those photos.

The new update will be released over the next month, but Snapchat said the app will be released selectively. Hopefully, Snapchat looks at numbers and chooses to send this update to the people who use the app the most regardless of who they are instead of limiting the app’s update release to well-known and wealthy Snapchat users.

Only time will tell, but Snapchat’s “Memories” is definitely the biggest news story in social media this week.

Acquisition by Snapchat Suggests 3D Selfies in the Future

As can be expected from the fastest-rising online social network, Snapchat is entering an acquisition phase with the goal of offering enticing features to their growing user base.

The company’s latest acquisition suggests that Snapchat users could take three-dimensional selfies in the near future, but there may also be a potential for virtual reality applications.

Snapchat quietly acquired Seene, a tech startup dedicated to the field of computer vision. As a company, Seene started doing business as Obvious Engineering, and its immediate focus was on developing applications that allow smartphone cameras to capture 3D image data for advanced rendering.

Seene is dedicated to the mobile space and the opportunities it offers for computer vision applications. The research and development conducted thus far by Seene has focused on interpreting motion and visual depth data captured by mobile devices with the goal of 3D reconstruction.

What is unique about Seene is that it seeks to accomplish something very similar to what Microsoft has done with the Kinect peripheral for the Xbox; however, it does not require several cameras and sensors to detect motion. With a single smartphone camera and an app, Seene can capture geometry data that can be translated into a 3D object.

Since Snapchat users seem to be obsessed with selfies, it can be safely assumed that this latest acquisition could be used for self-portraits and avatar creation. As Seene continues its research and development, geometry and motion data can be captured to make short 3D videos, which are the lifeblood of Snapchat.

Snapchat’s Discover and Stories Get a New Makeover

Snapchat is an extremely popular mobile messaging app that is used to share photos, videos, and text messages. It is also used to share drawings. Millions of people around the globe use this amazing app daily.

It has been announced that Snapchat’s Discover and Stories page is getting a complete makeover. The new page features squares instead of circles. Snapchat users were comfortable with seeing the icon for Vice or BuzzFeed, but they will now have to get used to seeing the image and headline associated with the story. The image and headline will give you a preview of what’s inside. This new feature will help people find stories that appeal to their interest. For example, you may not know that Tastemade features exclusive food videos, but you will be able to figure it out with the aid of the new breakfast image.

Snapchat users will now be able to subscribe to the Discover stories that are related to their interests, and unsubscribe from the stories that do not appeal to them. This is great news for users who were frustrated with being bombarded with stories they weren’t interested in reading. Unfortunately, this may be bad news for publications that are trying to establish a relationship with prospects in their targeted market. Publishers relied on the Discover page to reach people who may not normally follow their brand of content.

Snapchat continues to make moves to please their subscribers. Only time will tell if their latest move will become a smashing success.