WhatsApp has 450 million users at present. Facebook promises that the acquired new wing will be operated independently with its own board. Till date it is Facebook's biggest acquisition. According to official statement of Facebook, "The acquisition supports Facebook and WhatsApp's shared mission to bring more connectivity and utility to the world by delivering core Internet services efficiently and affordably." .
Facebook reportedly sought to acquire another hot messaging firm, Snapchat, for $3 billion last year.
"WhatsApp is on a path to connect one billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable," said Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and chief executive.
"I've known (WhatsApp founder) Jan (Koum) for a long time and I'm excited to partner with him and his team to make the world more open and connected."
"Almost five years ago we started WhatsApp with a simple mission: building a cool product used globally by everybody. Nothing else mattered to us," Koum said in a blog post.
"Today we are announcing a partnership with Facebook that will allow us to continue on that simple mission.
Some people work; some think; some invent; some acquire.