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May 19, 2015updated 30 Aug 2016 12:33pm

Facebook moves to monetise WhatsApp with B2C messaging

Company aiming to improve customer interaction with brands.

By CBR Staff Writer

Businesses might soon be able to contact customers through WhatsApp, as Facebook moves to monitise the messaging platform it bought last year.

At the 2015 F8 conference, the company hinted about its Businesses for Messenger initiative, which will be initially tested on Facebook Messenger.

The feature will facilitate interaction between businesses and customers, with businesses paying for the service. Some of the features could be used by Whatsapp.

The company also said that it was planning to improve communication between brands and customers using Messenger, with users being able to access customer service through the Messenger service.

Bloomberg cited Facebook chief financial officer David Wehner as saying: "We think that enabling that B2C messaging has good business potential for us.

"As we learn those things, I think there’s going to be opportunities to bring some of those things to WhatsApp, but that’s more longer-term than the near-term."

The company did not disclose how it plans to make money through the new offering, but previously Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that WhatsApp, with more than 800 million users, is at a level where it has the potential to become a business.

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