Major social media companies are continuing to buy hot new startups to add new features to their brands, and the latest such buyout has been a the mobile social media giant Snapchat’s acquisition of Vurb. According to Business Insider, the deal is set to be a $200 million purchase of Vurb through stocks and cash, with about 25% as stock funds and 25% purchase funds. Perhaps one striking aspect of this deal is that Snapchat plans on keeping most of Vurb’s current employees, including their CEO Bobby Lo who is said to be getting a $75 million contract to stay aboard. It’s unclear exactly what made Snapchat decide to purchase Vurb, as they have not given any interviews on the matter, but it’s been speculated that they are interested in what Bobby Lo’s team can bring to their company, perhaps even more so than simply adding Vurb’s platform to theirs.
Vurb is a search platform that is geared towards online shoppers or DIY people who want community reviews handy or other guides on finding what they’re looking for. Vurb has integrated various review sites like Yelp and Fandango on its interface, and also has an instant messaging program built in so users can contact their friends. The company was launched in 2011 and funded chiefly by Redpoint Ventures, with some additional funding from Atlas Ventures and CrunchFund.
According to MW Partners, Snapchat is currently the third most popular social media app, behind only of course Facebook and their chief competitor Instagram, but could this acquisition of Vurb expand its social media borders? With how established Facebook and Instagram are, Snapchat still has a lot of work ahead of it to catch them. But Snapchat has surpassed Twitter already and seems to be indicating they will be around for quite a while.