SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook has acquired tbh, a teen-focused polling app that allows users to send anonymous compliments to each other, for a sum reported to be less than $100m.
According to TechCrunch, which first reported the development, the deal will not require regulatory approval and will see tbh’s four co-creators become Facebook employees, while the app itself will continue with its own distinct brand name and design.
Launched only in August and still not available in all US states, tbh has witnessed meteoric growth, receiving more than five million downloads and 2.5 million daily active users in the past nine weeks alone.
The popular app enables its young users to answer positive-sounding, multiple choice questions about their friends, such as who “makes you laugh the hardest?” or who is “best to bring to a party?” and the complimentary results are then shared with those concerned.
“tbh and Facebook share a common goal – of building community and enabling people to share in ways that bring us closer together,” Facebook told TechCrunch in a statement.
“We’re impressed by the way tbh is doing this by using polling and messaging, and with Facebook’s resources tbh can continue to expand and build positive experiences.”
In its analysis of the deal, TechCrunch noted that it’s “interesting” Facebook chose to acquire tbh rather than clone it, considering it has been trying to copy other hit teen apps like Houseparty.
“With tbh’s strong brand name, distinctive design and explosive early traction, Facebook seems to have decided it was better to team-up than face-off,” said the TechCrunch report.
It also noted that since Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012, the image-sharing platform has since grown to 800 million users, while WhatsApp, acquired by Facebook in 2014, has grown to 1.3 billion users.
“Rather than waiting and watching until tbh climbed to be worth nearly $1bn like Instagram or $19bn like WhatsApp, Facebook swooped in early,” TechCrunch observed. “The last thing it needed was tbh ending up being bought by Snapchat.”
Sourced from TechCrunch; additional content by WARC staff