Is Snapchat plotting more acquisitions in the wake of its debt-financing deal?

Snapchat has proactively been snapping up tech companies this year en route to an expected IPO. Now, its formidable buying power could be set to receive a significant boost thanks to the company securing a new line of credit with a number of banks, including Morgan Stanley.

We reached out to Snapchat, but it declined to confirm the financial details behind the deal. Regardless of the exact numbers, raising debt financing indicates that it could be mulling more takeovers. Alternatively, it may just want to free itself of the hassle of seeking investment every time it wants to expand its offering.

Not that funding is a hard sell for the company — this year alone, Snapchat has accumulated over $2 billion on a rolling basis from a number of prestigious backers, including Fidelity, Alibaba, Tencent, and the Saudi investment group Kingdom Holding Company. Its most recent round of funding valued the app at just under $18 billion.

Snapchat has now taken what’s referred to in financial terms as a credit facility, meaning it can borrow against the line of credit at any time, Recode reports. Comparatively speaking, Facebook made the same move ahead of its IPO in 2012, although Snapchat refused to confirm when it plans to go public.

Sticking with the Facebook comparison, Snapchat (like its larger rival) is acquiring apps at a frantic pace. This year alone it has nabbed emoji creation app Bitmoji — later integrating it into its flagship product — and AR selfie app Seene. It is also in the process of finalizing a $110 million takeover of search and discovery app Vurb. Additionally, it simply can’t escape the speculation surrounding its first venture into hardware creation, with rumors claiming that it is working on a pair of smart glasses. Just this week, we reported that Snapchat had joined the Bluetooth Special Interest Group, which tends to be the first step in the manufacture of a Bluetooth-enabled device. A deep piggy bank would definitely come in handy if it were planning to go down that route.

Social Media

Facebook explains its worst outage as 3 million users head to Telegram

Facebook, if you didn't already know it, suffered a bit of an issue on Wednesday, March 13. An issue that took down not only its social networking site, but also Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger. On Thursday it offered an explanation.
Movies & TV

Disney Plus: Here’s what we know so far about the upcoming streaming service

Disney is bringing the full weight of its massive content library to its own streaming service in 2019. How will Disney Plus compare to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime? Here's what we know so far.

Ford to expand autonomous-car research in race to launch robo-taxi service

Ford is in a race with Waymo and GM Cruise to launch large-scale taxi and delivery services using autonomous vehicles. Already testing its technology in four U.S. cities, the automaker looks set to expand its program to a fifth.

GM Cruise to double its autonomous-car team to meet robo-taxi goal

With its eye on the launch of a robo-taxi service before the end of the year, General Motors' Cruise Automation has said it plans to double the size of its autonomous-vehicle team over the next nine months.
Social Media

Facebook shoots down Pages, ads sharing vaccine misinformation

Facebook will penalize Pages and Groups that share vaccine hoaxes on the platform, the company said Thursday, which will reduce the posts' reach. The network is also working to prevent the information from entering ads.
Social Media

Foursquare introduces Hypertrending feature: Creepy or cool?

Foursquare introduced the Hypertrending technology, which shows the most popular spots in town through the size of dots on a map. Foursquare's co-founder recognizes that the feature walks the fine line between being creepy and cool.

Selfie snapper attacked by jaguar during foolhardy photo attempt

Selfies with animals don't always work out too well, as a woman at a zoo in Arizona found out recently. Passing a safety barrier to get closer to a jaguar, the animal responded angrily by digging its claws into her flesh.

Switch up your Reddit routine with these interesting, inspiring, and zany subs

So you've just joined the wonderful world of Reddit and want to explore it. But with so many subreddits to choose from, scouring the "front page of the internet" can be confusing. Here are some of the best subreddits to get you started.
Social Media

Twitter wants you to help shape the future design of its app

Twitter is launching an app for testing new design features and it wants you to get involved. Those accepted into the program will have the chance to try out different conversation designs aimed at improving the user experience.
Emerging Tech

Professional drone racing is flying onto Twitter this summer

Professional drone racing is coming to Twitter for the first time this summer. Organizers hope the streaming deal with the social media platform will help the growing sport to further broaden its audience.

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Social Media

Twitter takes a cue from Instagram and Snapchat with new quick-swipe camera

Twitter is giving the "what's happening" treatment to photos and video by allowing users to access the in-app camera fast enough to catch and share the moment. The new Twitter camera is now accessible with a swipe.
Social Media

Yep, it’s not just you. Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp are down for many

Facebook's family of apps has been suffering issues for much of the day. Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook itself have been out of action for users around the world, with the company scrambling to sort it out.
Social Media

Facebook may soon let you watch live TV with friends in Watch Party

Facebook Watch Party is designed to allow friends to watch together, even when they can't be in the same physical space. Now, that feature could be expanding to include live TV. Facebook announced a test of the feature, starting with live…