Groupon Goes International, Buys Japanese and Russian Clones
When you are a groovy new web product, it is beyond doubt that you be subject to somewhat ‘intimidating’ imitators. But, start-up Groupon, has brilliantly taken advantage of the situation.
Recently, a considerable amount of companies have been cloning Groupon’s core feature set, and have been grabbing shares of Groupon’s US market. More so, international clones started rising and imitating the Groupon model around the globe.
Groupon agreed that these companies’ infrastructure in valuable, and decided to buy them. In may, it acquired its European clone ‘Citydeal’ and by so has accelerated its expansion into European markets including the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Poland, Finland, Denmark, Turkey, Sweden, Norway and Belgium.
After expanding in the Americas and Europe, Groupon decided to take on clones in Japan and Russia. The company bought a controlling stake in both Qpod.jp (Japan) and Darberry.ru (Russia) for undisclosed amounts, making Groupon’s reach worldwide. The companies’ names will be changed to “Groupon”. Each company’s founder will continue to lead it under the new Groupon name, and the sites’ branding and design will be aligned with that of Groupon.
When all is done and settled, Groupon will have operations in 230 markets and 29 countries and is predicted to reach as much as 13 million subscribers. With this kind of hostile expansion, Groupon has over passed a great deal of obstacles to its growth. According to CEO Rob Solomon, Groupon is nows working with companies that are already “the best in their markets.”
One can imagine Groupon’s investors (mainly Digital Sky Technologies of Zynga and Facebook fame, whose collaboration in Groupon’s Series C left the company valued at $1.35 billion and ready and covered to acquire any number of competitors) are thrilled.