According to recent WSJ and USA Today articles, WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton was denied jobs at both Facebook and Twitter before he set out to create one of the most widely used applications on the market. WhatsApp is basically a free service (costs just $1) allowing users to communicate via text from anywhere in the world. Recently, Brian cashed in as Facebook acquired his company for $19 billion. The application is growing at the rate of 1 million new users each day.
The growth rate of WhatsApp trumps that of Facebook, Gmail, Skype and Twitter in its first four years. Mark Zuckerberg said, “no one in the history of the world has ever done something like this.” WhatsApp will remain an independent service from Facebook. The company has about 55 people. Most of the application users are in Europe, India, and other non U.S. markets.
It’s remarkable that Brian Acton was once denied a job with Facebook. And now his company is being purchased by the social media giant. Sometimes things workout differently then planned. For Brian, the denial at Facebook led him to start his own company that was to be acquired at a premium by the company that once rejected him.
Adversity can be a blessing in disguise. Life is fraught with unintended consequences and unpredictable, pleasant surprises.