Twitter Buys Chroma Labs, The Startup Founded by Facebook Devs

Twitter Inc. is acquiring Croma Labs, a seven-man startup founded by former Facebook and Instagram employees to build photo and video-editing facilities.

Chroma Labs was launched last fall with an app that lets people edit photos and videos before sharing them on the Stories feature inside Instagram or other apps like Snap Inc.'s Snapchat. The company is joining Twitter to "give people more creative ways to express themselves in a conversation," Twitter product chief Kyvan Beypore said in a tweet. A Twitter spokesperson declined to comment on the terms of the deal.

Croma Labs co-founders John Barnett, Alex Lee and Joshua Harris worked on products on Facebook Inc. before establishing themselves to build a company around creative editing tools. While on Facebook, members of the group were involved in projects such as Instagram Stories, augmented-reality camera effects and Oculus virtual-reality headsets. Initial investors at the San Mateo, California-based startup include Index Ventures, Sweet Capital and Combine VC.

Twitter has said that improving the conversation on the social-media service is a top priority. In recent weeks, the San Francisco-based company has changed the way some user interactions occur in the app and has added the ability to respond to direct messages with emojis. Twitter has not unveiled a Stories-like product to disappear posts, although it introduced some camera features such as tags and labels last year.

"[We] created Creata Labs and many successful products to inspire creativity and help people tell their visual stories," Barnett said in a statement. "We look forward to continuing this mission on a large scale with one of the most important services in the world."


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