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Facebook's acquisition of the WhatsApp instant messaging service values the firm at around £11 billion - but why is it so much?
The CEO of Britain's biggest mobile operator EE, Olaf Swantree, has told Economics Editor Richard Edgar that messaging apps such as WhatsApp are not disruptive as the network "is all about data".
Mr Swantree says EE encourages users to use 4G for a variety of applications and WhatsApp is "not a threat" but an "opportunity to offer 4G to more customers in more places."
Facebook's buyout of WhatsApp values the messaging service at $19bn when share deals are taken into account - the equivalent of just over £11bn.
That exceeds the market valuation of some huge British and global brands:
Rolls-Royce - engine manufacturer and defence contractor ($18.7bn)
Sony - maker of the PlayStation and other electronics ($17bn)
Burger King - fast food chain ($9bn)
Sainsbury's - supermarket chain ($6.6bn)
ITV - TV channel and media group ($6bn)
Facebook's takeover of WhatsApp is the latest move by a large technology company to buy up a smaller social media competitor.
The $16bn (£9.58bn) deal dwarfs Yahoo's purchase of blogging site Tumblr last year for $1.1bn (£720m).
It followed Facebook's $1bn (£659 m) acquisition of photo-sharing app Instagram in 2012.
The WhatsApp brand will be maintained, and its headquarters will remain in Mountain View, California after the Purchas by Facebook.
WhatsApp co-founder and Chief Executive Jan Koum will join Facebook's board of directors, and WhatsApp's core messaging product and Facebook's existing Messenger app will continue to operate as stand alone applications.
The new move from Facebook comes after it recently reported record revenues of 2.5 billion dollars (£1.5 billion) from 750 million daily users.
Social networking company Facebook has announced it is to buy mobile messaging company WhatsApp for $16 billion (£9.6bn) in cash and stock.
Facebook said WhatsApp co-founder and Chief Executive Jan Koum would be joining the company's board.
"WhatsApp is on a path to connect one billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable," said Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
"I've known Jan for a long time and I'm excited to partner with him and his team to make the world more open and connected."