Google looks elsewhere after Groupon snub
Google, the world’s largest search engine, is still keen to get into the online coupon business despite failing to buy market-leader Groupon, according to the latest reports from the US.
Groupon turned down a bid reportedly worth a whopping $6 billion earlier this month, prompting speculation that the business could be preparing for an IPO.
But while Google might not have been able to add Groupon to its growing list of acquisitions, it might be able to snap up one of its smaller rivals.
Groupon dominates the online coupon business, offering members massive discounts on the condition that enough of them take part. It has only been around for two years, but its social media spin on the popular online voucher trend has seen the company grow into one of the web’s biggest brands.
A report in this morning’s New York Post suggests Google has already held talks with smaller online discount providers in the weeks since the Groupon deal collapsed.
The report names two of Groupon’s smaller competitors, LivingSocial and New York-based BuyWithMe.
The kind of subscriber numbers Groupon has notched up makes it an appealing prospect. But with Google’s weight behind one of the smaller players, competition would obviously step up a notch.
Google sees these businesses as a natural extension of its ad-driven online empire, which it has been expanding largely through acquisitions over the past decade. Since 2001, Google has bought more than 80 businesses, with YouTube and DoubleClick among the highest profile deals.