According to a report by Axios, Facebook confirmed today that it will be acquiring Giphy, the web-based animated gif search engine, in a deal worth around $400 million. The company said it isn’t disclosing terms of the deal. Giphy has become a central source for shareable, high-engagement content, and its animated response gifs are available across Facebook’s platforms, as well as through other social media apps and services on the web.
Giphy provides built-in search and sticker functions for Instagram, and it will continue to operate in that capacity, becoming a part of the Instagram team. Giphy will also be available to Facebook’s other apps through existing and additional integrations. People will still be able to upload their own GIFs, and Facebook intends to continue to operate Giphy under its own branding and offer integration to outside developers.
The company says it will invest in additional tech development for Giphy, as well as build out new relationships for it on both the content side and the endpoint developer side. Facebook says that more than 50% of traffic that Giphy receives already comes from Facebook’s apps, including Instagram, Messenger, the FB app itself, and WhatsApp.
Giphy was founded back in 2013 and was originally simply a search engine for gifs. The website’s first major product expansion was an extension that allowed sharing through Facebook, and it quickly added Twitter as a second integration. According to the most recent data from Crunchbase, Giphy had raised $150.9 million across 5 rounds, backed by funders including DFJ Growth, Lightspeed, Betaworks, GV, Lerer Hippeau and more.