Ephemeral-messaging startup Snapchat has retained the services of Heather Podesta + Partners, LLC, a D.C. lobbying firm, according to a filing released Monday.
First reported by The Hill, the filing gives little information as to what issues the firm will speak to inside the Beltway beyond “educating policymakers regarding the application’s operation and practices.”
A Snapchat spokeswoman confirmed the hire to Re/code.
The hiring comes just days after the company’s highly publicized security breach, in which the user names and phone numbers of 4.6 million people were exposed via a vulnerability inside the app. Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel promised to update the application with a fix in the near future, though he has taken some heat publicly for his lack of apology in the company’s response to users.
Though the new hire looks not to be directly connected to last weeks events, as a Snapchat spokeswoman said the two companies began meeting as far back as November.
The move — Snapchat’s first real presence in Washington — further signals the company’s ambition to become a true business, coming months after spurning multibillion-dollar acquisition offers from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg. Snapchat most recently raised a $50 million Series C round of funding from Coatue Management.