Popular social networking service Facebook, off late, has been on a role by acquiring a number of setups to enhance its own social offerings. While the last major acquisition the company made was WhatsApp, it seems like the company has started thinking on a much higher level by agreeing to a recent $2 billion deal for virtual reality company Oculus VR.
But why a virtual reality company such as Oculus VR all of a sudden? While that answer still requires some time before an answer is obtained, the best bet here is maybe Facebook sees a future where a 3-D virtual world will allow users to hang out with their friends, rather than just looking at images.
"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."
Facebook, on Tuesday, announced that it had reached a definitive agreement to acquire Oculus VR, which is a leader in immersive virtual reality technology, for a total of approximately $2 billion. This $2 billion 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).
Moreover, the agreement also speaks of an additional $300 million earn-out in cash and stock based on the achievement of certain milestones.
"We are excited to work with Mark and the Facebook team to deliver the very best virtual reality platform in the world," said Brendan Iribe, co-founder and CEO of Oculus VR. "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."
The new acquisition is one of several ways Facebook, with its 1.2 billion users worldwide and counting, is trying to open up the future by introducing more and more features that will come in handy later down the line.