Brian Acton WhatsApp Co-founder | Entrepreneur Computer Programmer

Brian Acton
Brian Acton

Brian Acton is more popular as the co-founder of very popular mobile messaging application WhatsApp that helps people stay connected. Acton was born on 17 February 1972 in Michigan to Norma Acton.  Brian Acton is an American computer programmer and Internet entrepreneur. The man who was rejected by Facebook as an employee sold WhatsApp to Zuckerberg, co-founder of Facebook.

Brian Acton Education and Career:

In 1994, Brian Acton was graduated from Stanford University in computer science. Earlier he also studied in University of Pennsylvania and University of Central Florida. In 1992, Brian Acton worked as system administrator in Rockwell International. Later he worked as a test engineer in Apple and Adobe systems companies. Brian Acton was hired by Yahoo Inc in the year 1996 and he was the 44th employee of Yahoo. Yahoo was hired Jan Koum in 1998, who later become the co-founder of Whatsapp along with Acton.

They are worked together for many years at yahoo. In the year 2000 Acton invested in the dotcom boom and lost millions in the dot-com bubble. In 2007, both Acton and Koum decided to leave yahoo and took a year off. They started travelling around South America. Both applied for a job in Facebook but both were failed. Koum bought an iPhone in January 2009 and realized that the then seven-month-old App Store was about to spawn a whole new industry of apps. Brian Acton visited one of his friends Alex Fishman and talked about developing an app. A week later on his birthday 24 February 2009, Whatsapp was incorporated in California. Koum choose the name Whatsapp because it sounds like daily phrase “what’s up”.

About WhatsApp:

Social networking has become a vital part of people’s life in the present times. There are a number of social networking sites such as Facebook, twitter, Orkut.  In mobile phones Hike, WhatsApp, Line, Wechat, Messenger, Viber are some examples of instant messaging applications. Out of these, Whatsapp is the most amazing app and more than 1 billon people are using it. Due to the high level of flexibility, privacy, security and ease Whatsapp has become very popular worldwide.

In the year 2014, Brian Acton and Koum agreed to sell Whatsapp to Facebook for $19 billion USD in cash and stock. According to the Forbes, Acton held over 20% stake in the company. Brian Acton is now one of the wealthiest men he is the 551st billionaire in the world and 190th wealthiest man in USA.

Brian Acton Inspirational Quotes:

  • “People want chat histories. They're a permanent testimony of a relationship.”

  • “Going public is 18-month process, while an acquisition is a 6-month process. Going public means going under so much scrutiny, regulatory approval, auditing, magnified 10 times. Having the stomach to do that isn't necessarily in my DNA. My DNA is building a product and a service.”

  • “My mom started an air-freight company; my grandmother built a golf course. I have a certain degree of entrepreneurial risk-taking in my family history. Maybe that eventually rubbed off on me a little bit.”

  • “Yes, I was a big math and computer geek, that's true. I was driven by the scholastic side of things. For me, it was all about what I could do with math and computers.”

  • “Dealing with ads is depressing. You don't make anyone's life better by making advertisements work better.”

  • “There's a certain degree of speculation that goes into valuations. In so far as the market supports a valuation, everyone who gets a great one deserves it, but they should also be cautious because that speculation is temporary. I saw Yahoo go from $100 billion to $10 billion. It's not a long-term measure.”

  • “The phone is one hundred, one hundred and ten years old. There was a middle period where the government had a broad ability to surveil, but if you look at human history in total, people evolved and civilizations evolved with private conversations and private speech.”

  • “I don't really want to be in the business of observing conversations.”

  • “Building secure products actually makes for a safer world; many people in law enforcement may not agree with that.”

  • “When I joined 'WhatsApp,' I was 38 years old. Opportunity is available to us in all walks of life and at all ages.”

  • “When I worked at Yahoo, I saw a lot of acquisitions. Some succeeded, and some failed. I think I have learned from that.”

  • “I myself saw Yahoo become a $100 billion company and then become a $10 billion company, so you always have to look at valuations with a grain of salt and understand it is a point-in-time measure.”

  • “The best part of working with Facebook has been the cross-fertilization of ideas, people, and technology.”

  • “Free BSD has a nicely tuned network stack and extremely good reliability.”

  • “In early 2010, we launched our first localized version of 'WhatsApp' for iPhone. It included Spanish and German language translations, to name a couple.”
  • “For me specifically, it was important to graduate. In my family, I was one of the first graduates. My mom did not have a college degree. My dad did not have a college degree.”

  • “WhatsApp will bring Facebook another billion users. We will be a billion-user product. Whether there is a direct valuation or an indirect valuation, there is value, and Facebook understands that well.”

Brian Acton

  • “Companies that have been built and operated for a long time are the most successful companies.”
  • “My DNA is building a product and a service.”

  • “You never want to be in a position where you can't make payroll.”

  • “I think every acquisition is unique and different. The best strategy is to listen to the founders and follow their lead.”

  • “Your insurance broker has your telephone number, but your insurance broker doesn't have your Facebook ID. I think they are very different modes of communication. Commingling them can come with risk and peril”.

  • “You have a certain identity that you present to the world on Facebook, and you have a certain identity that you present with the telephone, and they are different.”

  • “It's not 100 per cent clear to me what's working about Snapchat.”

  • “Going public is 18-month process, while an acquisition is a 6-month process. Going public means going under so much scrutiny, regulatory approval, auditing, magnified 10 times. Having the stomach to do that isn't necessarily in my DNA. My DNA is building a product and a service.”


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