Many of us have been quite surprised at the sudden acquisition of Instagram by Facebook. The surprise came from the fact that Kevin Systrom, Instagram’s CEO, had cited in the past that he planned to keep Instagram independent. However, a Wall Street Journal report now suggests that all it took for things to finalize between the companies was a weekend together by the CEOs of both companies at Zuckerberg’s house.
Interestingly, Zuckerberg chose to keep Facebook board off the negotiations and dealt with Systron on its own. From the looks of it, it seems that the acquisition of Instagram was immensely important to Mark Zuckerberg. Keeping it secret from rest of the board was probably so that nothing leaks out until things are final.
Roughly a day before Facebook officially announced the acquisition of Facebook, Zuckerberg told the board of directors that he has plans of spending a whooping $1 billion on the acquisition. There was a voting at the board to allow that to happen, although it is being said that this was merely symbolic and Zuckerberg had made the decision anyway.
One person that did knew well before time was Facebook’s COO, Sheryl Sandberg, who was pre-handedly that Zukcerberg plans to aggressively pursue the acquisition of Instagram. The meetings with Systrom, however, didn’t involve Sandberg. Rather, besides Zuckerberg, Amin Zoufonoun who is Facebook’s Director of Corporate Development, was present during the meeting to assist the two.
Eventually, although the decision had the weight of the entire board of directors of Facebook behind it, it was ultimately the aggressive pursuit of Mark Zuckerberg that led to such a speedy acquisition of the photo-sharing service.