Facebook has been on an acquisition agenda for the past few years – first Instagram, then WhatsApp and finally Oculus. But things didn’t go smoothly at first. During the acquisition of Oculus, Brendan Iribe, the then CEO of Oculus, called Zuckerberg to tell him that even Google was interested in their company.
Such competition is not new to a company like Facebook. During WhatsApp acquisition, Google once again tried its best to beat Facebook – but it couldn’t. So what is exactly happening? Why is Facebook always succeeding?
Zuckerberg had to spill the beans during a public testimony on Tuesday. He was in a Dallas Courtroom to testify in a lawsuit against Oculus. Here’s what he revealed.
1. He builds relationships first
He had become friends with the owners of WhatsApp and with those who worked closely with WhatsApp before acquiring it. This way he was able to build trust between his company and theirs. He had been friends with them for years which gave them “good amount of context” when they planned to move in.
2. Zuckerberg mantra: “move fast and buy stuff.”
When you are in a competitive situation, sometimes you have to take decisions fast, he explained. If you are moving slow, then someone else will come with a better offer. To top that you will have to spend more money. So it is in the best interest of the company if you can just get them sign on the bottom soon.
3. Sometimes using scare tactics help
“That’s less my thing,” he said. But we believe that’s what he tried to do with Snapchat owner Evan Spiegel who famously turned down Zuckerberg’s $3 billion offer a few years ago. That’s because he said that he sometimes uses this technique on small startups.
He scares them by telling them how difficult it would be to build a company on their own. This way he gives them the incentive to join them so that they can avoid the mishaps going independently on their own.
4. He shares the vision of the company
For example, if Oculus can give the hardware, Facebook can provide the experiences. This was the pitch according to him that everyone “bought into.” He believes that apart from giving the company the monetary incentive, he also has to give them the incentive to carry out their vision. It should make them feel as if this acquisition will benefit both the companies by achieving a greater goal.