NEW YORK — Facebook is buying mobile messaging service WhatsApp for $19 billion in cash and stock, bigger than any acquisition that Google, Microsoft or Apple have ever done.
The world’s biggest social networking company said Wednesday it is paying $12 billion in Facebook stock and $4 billion in cash for WhatsApp. The app’s founders and employees also will get restricted stock worth $3 billion that will vest over four years after the deal closes.
The deal translates to roughly 9 percent of Facebook’s market value. In comparison, Google’s biggest deal, Motorola Mobility, stood at $12.5 billion, while Microsoft’s largest was Skype at $8.5 billion.