Close on the heels of acquiring WhatsApp, a cross-platform mobile messaging company, Facebook says it has reached a definitive agreement to acquire Oculus VR, Inc., an immersive virtual reality technology company, for a total of approximately $2 billion.
This includes $400 million in cash and 23.1 million shares of Facebook common stock (valued at $1.6 billion based on the average closing price of the 20 trading days preceding March 21, 2014 of $69.35 per share).
The agreement also provides for an additional $300 million earn-out in cash and stock based on the achievement of certain milestones.
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Facebook believes that virtual reality technology is a strong candidate to emerge as the next social and communications platform.
“Mobile is the platform of today, and now we’re also getting ready for the platforms of tomorrow,” said Facebook founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg. “Oculus has the chance to create the most social platform ever, and change the way we work, play and communicate.”
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“We believe virtual reality will be heavily defined by social experiences that connect people in magical, new ways. It is a transformative and disruptive technology, that enables the world to experience the impossible, and it’s only just the beginning,” said Brendan Iribe, co-founder and CEO of Oculus VR.
Oculus will maintain its headquarters in Irvine, CA, and will continue development of the Oculus Rift, its virtual reality platform.
The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2014.
Photo courtesy: Facebook