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Google executive: We did not bid for WhatsApp

WhatsApp Inc.Media IndustryMark ZuckerbergMobile World Congress

A top Google executive has denied reports that said the Silicon Valley tech giant made a $10-billion bid to purchase WhatsApp, the messaging service that was recently acquired by Facebook.

Last week, Facebook announced that it had agreed to pay $19 billion for WhatsApp, an app with 450 million users. Soon after, reports surfaced that said Google had also made an offer to buy the popular startup.

Citing two unnamed sources, Fortune said Google bid $10 billion. That report was backed up by The Information, which said Google offered WhatsApp millions of dollars just to be notified if any other companies also tried to bid for the app.

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At the time of the reports, Google declined to comment, but at the Mobile World Congress conference in Barcelona, Spain, this week, the head of the company's Chrome and Android divisions denied the WhatsApp reports.

“WhatsApp was definitely an exciting product,” said Google's Sundar Pichai, according to The Telegraph. “We never made an offer to acquire them. Press reports to the contrary are simply untrue.”

But while Google denies offering any money to buy WhatsApp, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he believes the company is worth even more than $19 billion.

“WhatsApp is the most engaging app we’ve ever seen on mobile. It blows everything else away," Zuckerberg said at the conference in Spain earlier this week. 

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