Facebook was unable to snap up Snapchat back in 2013 so, this year, it turned its sights to the Asian version of Snapchat: Snow.
But history, it seems, is repeating itself. According to a report from TechCrunch, CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s efforts to buy Snow have been rebuffed by Navver, the South Korean company that also created Line.
Despite a personal phone call from Zuckerberg, who relayed a very healthy offer, Naver chairman Hae-Jin Lee declined the offer, saying Snow has the potential to become a success without any help from Facebook or other large tech firm, according to the report. After all if Line, can raise more than $1 billion in a dual Japan-U.S. IPO (which happened this summer), than Lee likely thinks Snow can do so too.
Snow, according to Tech Crunch, has approximately 80 million downloads thus far, and is increasing by roughly 10 million more per month. Available for Android and iOS, Snow enables users to send customized video messages to friends.
Facebook, despite its failure to purchase Snapchat and Snow, is doing its best to come up with its own similar products. Instagram Stories, which was launched in August, is the latest effort to compete with the ever-popular Snapchat. Instagram Stories captures a user’s daily photos and videos in a slideshow format. The images are not published to the user’s profile. Instead, they disappear after 24 hours has elapsed.
Whether Facebook will indeed come up with a product to truly compete with Snapchat is anyone’s guess. Snapchat, which rejected a $3-billion, all-cash buyout offer from Facebook three years ago, is expected to go public in 2017 with a valuation of nearly $25 billion — and it remains popular with the very important Millennial demographic.