While the war for dominance in the social networking space continues to intensify, Snapchat is looking to beef up its war-chest for the battle ahead. A Bloomberg report has now come up, stating that the photos and video sharing app is looking to raise a fresh round, valuing the company in the vicinity of $16 – $19 Billion.
As per the report, Snapchat is looking to raise as much as $500 Million, said a source familiar with the matter. The person further said that the executives are already in advanced discussions with fund managers to raise that sort of amount.
If this news comes out to be true, Snapchat will become world’s third-most valuable venture-capital-backed start-up, though it will be quite behind the second-ranked Uber, which is valued to the north of $40 Billion. However, with its $19 B valuation, it will come pretty close to the $22 Billion which Facebook paid for IM app WhatsApp. Back in 2009, Facebook had offered to acquire Snapchat for $3 Billion, which the later turned down.
Snapchat lets people take and draw on photos, then send them to select friends or add them to a public “story.” The photos and videos disappear seconds after the recipient views them. Sanpchat claims that its users exchange over 700 Million such ‘snaps’ and view 500 Million stores every day.
However, the company has been receiving fierce competition from rivals like WhatsApp, and other similar Asian apps, which have been growing in popularity on a regional level. Snapchat’s biggest failure till date, has probably been its lesser penetration into the Asian market, where bigger regional players have scooped up its potential user-base.
Nevertheless, the company has been introducing a slew of new features to make its app more of an entertainment provider. In January, SnapChat introduced Discover, a feature which distributed curated news content through short media stories.
The media partners included the National Geographic, Yahoo News, Comedy Central, Time Inc.’s People magazine, Scripps Networks Interactive’s Food Network, CNN, Warner Music Group, ESPN, Vice Media, DailyMail.com and Cosmopolitan.
We’ve contacted Snapchat for an official comment on this news, and will update the story once we receive a comment.