In an exclusive event hosted by the Young Entrepreneurs Society and the University of Sydney Union, co-founder of mobile technology startup Snapchat Evan Spiegel will participate in a student only interactive session at the USYD campus next Monday evening.
At just 24 years old, Spiegel is seen as one of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, having built a company valued at over US$2 billion by the age of 21 that boasts millions of individuals all over the world as users.
During the one hour session, Spiegel is expected to give his views on entrepreneurship, startups, and give people an insight on the future of Snapchat. The event is exclusively for University of Sydney students only.
Industry chatter at the moment indicates that Spiegel and his team are currently working on a new funding round, that when closed will value the company at US$19 billion. Earlier this week Spiegel met with Saudi Arabian Prince Alwaleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz al Saud for discussions, with the Prince’s investment company putting out a statement saying that the two were discussing “potential business co-operation” between their companies.
Prince Alwaleed is a veteran investor and has stakes in other technology companies such as Twitter, Apple, AOL, and the China based JD.com. These conversations also come at an opportune time for the Prince, as he recently sold his stake in Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and is rumoured to be looking at a new media entity to invest some of his billions of dollars into.
Snapchat now has more than 100 million monthly users and as a company has grown rapidly outside of the ‘messaging’ space that it was once known for. Additional features like ‘Snapchat Stories’ and ‘Discover’ have been widely embraced on the platform and are a growing source of revenue for the business. To give you an example of the power that in particular ‘Discover’ (a feature that allows media partners to stream video clips on the platform) has, a recent campaign ran by The Food Network resulted in over 10 million unique visitors to the website in less than 2 weeks.
There is no word yet on whether Spiegel is in Australia for reasons other than this talk at the University of Sydney.