Yesterday, Snap introduced a (fantastic) new feature called Snap Map. At first, people pointed fingers at its similarities to social location-sharing app, Zenly, until TechCrunch’s Josh Constine revealed that Evan acquired the company for $250M to $350M. PLOT TWIST! 😲 Zenly co-founder Antoine Martin laid out the company's mission in their Product Hunt launch last year:
“We’ve been on a mission to popularize constant location sharing for the past 5 years. Zenly is now the closest thing to a social network built on a map, with your friends and family.”
Unlike Snap’s acquisition of Vergence Labs (which turned into Spectacles), Zenly isn’t an obvious acquisition for the “camera company.” The deal, it appears, is just the latest in a series Snap Acquisitions that make up an essential part of the Snapchat core experience. More on that here.
Evan Spiegel, known for being one of the great product visionaries of our time, has an underrated skill: knowing when to acquire and when to build.