Google made history earlier this week when it disclosed the financial details for one of its biggest subsidiaries YouTube.
According to Alphabet’s Q4 results, YouTube generated a staggering $US15.2 billion ($22.6 billion) in ad revenue for 2019, which was up 36 per cent from 2018 and almost double from 2017.
And while Facebook does not officially share the financial details for its photo-sharing platform Instagram, Bloomberg this week reported Instagram generated $US 20 billion ($29.6 billion) in ad revenue for 2019.
These unofficial numbers are said to have come from sources familiar with the matter.
If correct, this would mean Instagram accounts for more than a quarter of Facebook’s total revenue, which was. $US70.7 billion in 2019
Since acquiring the photo-sharing platform for $US715 million in 2012, Facebook has had great success in monetising the platform, which did not serve ads at the time of acquisition.
After initially starting with a handful of select big brands, Instagram only opened up its ads business to all advertisers in 2015.
The platform has slowly expanded its advertising solution in recent years, launching ads for stories, the explore feed and branded content.
The evolving ad solutions have been met with continued growth on the platform, which now boasts more than one billion users.
Facebook has moved to align itself more closely with the Instagram brand recently, rebranding it to ‘Instagram From Facebook’ last year.