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Brian Acton Quotes

Brian Acton

Brian Acton quotes: the WhatsApp co-founder’s best sayings.

“When I joined WhatsApp, I was 38 years old.  Opportunity is available to us in all walks of life and at all ages.”

“You never know what is coming to your life next.  Just don’t forget to try harder tomorrow, as one rejection can push you to the next level – acceptance – which is much more valuable in all possible ways.”

“A single interview can not decide your future.  It doesn’t mean that you are a failure if you are rejected at one instance.  Work hard for the empowering future.”

“Never give up.  Work hard for a better future.”

“Take the time to get it right.”

“Dealing with ads is depressing.  You don’t make anyone’s life better by making advertisements work better.”

“We don’t want to build a hookup app so you can find someone weird to talk to.  It’s not what we’re about.  We’re about your intimate relationships.”

“A single message is like your first-born child.  We can never drop a message.”

“People want chat histories.  They’re a permanent testimony of a relationship.”

“The phone is one hundred, one hundred and ten years old.  There was a middle period where the government had a broad ability to surveil, but if you look at human history in total, people evolved and civilizations evolved with private conversations and private speech.”

“Facebook turned me down.  It was a great opportunity to connect with some fantastic people.  Looking forward to life’s next adventure.  [Acton applied for a job at Facebook and was rejected five years prior to them acquiring WhatsApp.]”

“When I worked at Yahoo, I saw a lot of acquisitions.  Some succeeded, and some failed.  I think I have learned from that.”

“I think every acquisition is unique and different.  The best strategy is to listen to the founders and follow their lead.”

“There’s a certain degree of speculation that goes into valuations.  Insofar as the market supports a valuation, everyone who gets a great one deserves it, but they should also be cautious because that speculation is temporary.”

“I myself saw Yahoo become a $100 billion company and then become a $10 billion company, so you always have to look at valuations with a grain of salt and understand it is a point-in-time measure.”

“WhatsApp will bring Facebook another billion users.  We will be a billion-user product.  Whether there is a direct valuation or an indirect valuation, there is value, and Facebook understands that well.”

“The best part of working with Facebook has been the cross-fertilization of ideas, people and technology.”

“We’re the most atypical Silicon Valley company you’ll come across.  We were founded by thirty-somethings; we focused on business sustainability and revenue rather than getting big fast; we’ve been incognito almost all the time; we’re mobile first; and we’re global first.”

“[On Snapchat, a WhatsApp competitor that turned down a $3 billion offer from Facebook] Great, teenagers can use it to get laid all day long.  I don’t care.  I’m 42, essentially married with a kid.  I don’t give a sh*t about this.  I’m not sexting with random strangers.  I send the ‘I love you’s’ in text.  She’s sending me photos of our baby.  These are memories.”

“Companies that have been built and operated for a long time are the most successful companies.”

“Going public is an 18-month process, while an acquisition is a six-month process.  Going public means going under so much scrutiny, regulatory approval, auditing, magnified 10 times.  Having the stomach to do that isn’t necessarily in my DNA.”

“You never want to be in a position where you can’t make payroll.”

“My DNA is building a product and a service.”

“Yes, I was a big math and computer geek, that’s true.  I was driven by the scholastic side of things.  For me, it was all about what I could do with math and computers.”

“My mom started an air-freight company; my grandmother built a golf course.  I have a certain degree of entrepreneurial risk-taking in my family history.  Maybe that eventually rubbed off on me a little bit.”

“For me specifically, it was important to graduate.  In my family, I was one of the first graduates.  My mom did not have a college degree.  My dad did not have a college degree.”

“After eight years at WhatsApp, I have decided to move on and start a new chapter in my life.  I intend to start a foundation focused at the intersection of nonprofit, technology and communications.”

“You build it once, it runs everywhere, in every country.  You don’t need a sophisticated sales force.  It’s a very simple business.”

“We believe there is an opportunity to act in the public interest and make a meaningful contribution to society by building sustainable technology that respects users and does not rely on the commoditization of personal data.”

“[Why they sold WhatsApp to Facebook in 2014] Zuckerberg simply threw a ton of money at us.  He made us an offer we couldn’t refuse.  They are businesspeople; they are good businesspeople.  They just represent a set of business practices, principles, ethics, and policies that I don’t necessarily agree with.”

“At the end of the day, I sold my company.  I sold my users’ privacy to a larger benefit.  I made a choice and a compromise.  And I live with that every day.”

“Extreme wealth, it seems, is not as liberating as you would hope.”

“I am very fortunate at my age to have the flexibility to take new risks and focus on what I’m passionate about.”

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