European Union (EU) Competition Commission approved Facebook – WhatsApp deal worth 19 billion US dollar on 3 October 2014. The Commission cleared the deal saying that the Facebook-WhatsApp deal would not hurt competition.
The deal was disputed by telecom companies as soon as Facebook had announced to acquire whatsApp earlier in 2014. The telecom companies worried that deal would hurt competition.
With the approval of EU regulators, the deal will give Facebook a strong foothold in the fast-growing mobile messaging market.
Also, WhatsApp is poised to become a potentially powerful rival to companies such as Deutsche Telekom, Orange and Telecom Italia with its plan to add free voice-call services for its 450 million customers.
WhatsApp and its rivals such as KakaoTalk, China's WeChat and Viber have in recent years won over telecoms operators' customers with a free text messaging option.
According to market researcher Ovum, the total share of revenue from this sector totaled about 120 billion US dollar in 2013.
When: 3 October 2014