All Founders Stories

Evan Spiegel

Co-Founder, CEO at Snap Inc.


Evan's early days

Evan attended Stanford to study Project Design, where he met his eventual co-founder Bobby Murphy.

They first collaborated on a side project that aimed to improve the college application process.

he venture failed to gain traction, but they realized they were a good team together.


A class assignment

The idea for what would eventually become Snapchat arose from Spiegel’s class project.

At that time, most photo apps centred around beautifying your photos

Spiegel's proposed project app was a photo-sharing platform where people could share awkward, fun photos with their friends

Spiegel and Murphy, with their classmate Reggie Brown launched their first prototype ‘Picaboo’ on the AppStore. 


The first prototype: Picaboo

On its release, the prototype didn’t get much traction. But on troubleshooting, they figured out why:

users could take screenshots of the pictures, defeating the main purpose of the app. 

To fix this, they built a notification informing users if a screenshot of their photo was taken. 


Reworking the prototype: Picaboo to Snapchat

With this change, the app started picking up steam! 

Picaboo was renamed 'Snapchat'. and Spiegel dropped out of college to solely focus on the app

He shifted his focus away from marketing; and towards improving the interface of the app. 

After the redevelopment, an android version of the app was launched.


Snapchat blows up!

After the android release, Snapchat’s popularity exploded! 

Snapchat became unstoppable. Even Meta tried to release their version of the app 'Poke'.

Unfortunately, 'Poke' could not replicate Snapchat's charm and had to shut down

According to Snapchat’s published statistics, the app had around 166 million active users by 2017. 


Wall street visit

With this explosive growth, the next step in Spiegal’s plans was to go public. 

When Spiegel took Snapchat to the New York Stock Exchange, the stock was oversubscribed by 10 times! 

The Snap stock raked in $3.4 billion dollars with 200 million shares.


How's Snapchat today?

As of 2022, Snapchat has around 332 million daily users. 

With its user base growing at an average rate of 4% per year, Snapchat has been growing at a faster rate than its competitors Facebook(Meta) and Twitter! 

Ten years strong with a young user base and a strong management team, Snapchat appears to be far from its peak and has new feats to achieve.

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