SAN FRANCISCO, USA - Facebook announced Monday that it had reached an agreement to acquire Instagram, describing it as "a fun, popular photo-sharing app for mobile devices," for $1 billion in cash and shares.
"For years, we've focused on building the best experience for sharing photos with your friends and family," Facebook founder and chief Mark Zuckerberg said in announcing the deal
"Now, we'll be able to work even more closely with the Instagram team to also offer the best experiences for sharing beautiful mobile photos with people based on your interests."
Zuckerberg called the acquisition "an important milestone for Facebook because it's the first time we've ever acquired a product and company with so many users. We don't plan on doing many more of these, if any at all.
"But providing the best photo sharing experience is one reason why so many people love Facebook and we knew it would be worth bringing these two companies together."
Facebook in February filed for a stock offering and could raise as much as $10 billion in the largest flotation ever by an Internet company on Wall Street.
Facebook -- the leading social network in all but six countries, notably China and Russia -- said it has more than 845 million users including 483 million who log in daily.
Facebook's value has been estimated at between $75 billion and $100 billion.