Reggie Brown sued his partners over Snapchat and got $157.5 M. Evans Spiegel says, ‘He exploited my attempt at generosity’
Murphy was asked about a Facebook status update he wrote where he calls Brown his ‘employer’. Looking uncomfortable, he replied: ‘Uh … Well it looks like here that I did something to that effect. ‘I don’t have a specific recollection of this happening … although I would say that it would have been unclear to me what … tagging someone as an ’employer’ under Facebook would mean.’
Who tried to hoodwink who? Find out in the story below:
Needs birth discovery. The story starts in a Stanford dormitory. Reggie Brown and his friends were thinking out a secret way to sext their girlfriends without getting into trouble.
Suddenly, Reggie Brown pops an idea, “What if they could create a texting app that has disappearing messages?” His friend, Evan Spiegel‘s, thinks it’s a million-dollar idea!” and a great idea indeed it was. But Reggie Brown didn’t know to file a patent.
Evan’s previous experience with apps soon earned him a place as CEO in the new partnership, while Reggie, initiator of the idea, becomes the CMO, with an agreement to split everything equally and make all decisions together. Soon after, Bobby Murphy joined as technical co-founder, because both Reggie and Evans could not code, moreso, Bobby had been Evan’s previous Startup partner under the company Tayappa. The app was initially started as Picaboo and Pictaboo
Reggie lost enthusiasm when the project was getting rather difficult coming through and this puts Evans firmly in the saddle, making essential decisions by the day.
For some strange reasons, Reggie Brown’s motivation kept falling. Spiegel finally takes full responsibility by incorporating Snapchat under Tayappa in order to avoid the effort of creating a new company, as it seems. Snapchat soon got a break and the app’s popularity spread like wildfires.
A huge disagreement erupted when Evan and Reggie had to discuss company shares. Reggie originator of the idea wants 20%, Spiegel who incorporated the idea under his own company Tayappa, together with Bobby thinks Reggie deserves a maximum of 10% or nothing. Reggie Brown has been technically eased out of the business.
Reggie Brown took solace to the courts and got $157.5 million. Whereas, Spiegel and Murphy become billionaires as CEO and CTO respectively.
The case according to observers is reminiscent of the Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss suit against Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, which ended with a $65 million settlement.