SEATTLE /CNW/ – (Monday) Zomato, a leading restaurant search app, announced it has acquired IAC-owned Urbanspoon in one of the largest purchases ever of a U.S.-based consumer Internet company by an Indian startup. The strategic deal marks Zomato’s entrance into North America and strengthens its position as a premiere destination for millions of people around the world who want a better way to find places to eat.
Zomato enables users to find the best restaurants nearby, with access to local restaurant reviews and a rich collection of information about where to go and what to eat. Zomato is already a dominant player in markets across the globe, including India, the UK, Europe, South East Asia, and South America. In the past six months, Zomato has acquired six local, dominant restaurant search players in New Zealand, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Italy and Turkey, including Poland’s Gastronauci and Italy’s Cibando to expand its global footprint.
The acquisition of Urbanspoon will more than double Zomato’s web traffic from 35 million visits per month to over 80 million. It will also more than triple the company’s inventory of restaurants from 300,000 to more than 1,000,000 globally. Zomato is now active in 22 countries.
“We have been planning our entry into the North American market for some time, and Urbanspoon’s excellent reputation and foothold in North America, Australia and the UK provides the perfect opportunity for our global growth,” said Deepinder Goyal, Founder and CEO of Zomato. “We are delighted to welcome Urbanspoon and their audience into Zomato. We will soon be integrating the two products to bring the best of both products to all of our users.”
Founded in 2008, Zomato is backed by Sequoia Capital. The company sets itself apart from competitors with a grassroots approach to gathering and curating useful restaurant information. Zomato hires local residents to scan menus, take photos, and create recommendations, which enables the company to provide richer, more accurate data than other restaurant apps. And while other restaurant search services provide basic information (such as hours of operations and address), Zomato takes the experience a step further by delivering real-time information, up-to-date reviews, maps/directions, and ratings. Zomato also enables users to place table bookings directly from the iOS and Android apps.
This acquisition provides immediate benefits to both businesses. Zomato’s hyperlocal advertising model and its “Zomato for Business” app suite allows restaurants to engage more deeply with customers, imparting significant benefits to all Urbanspoon restaurants and customers. In the coming months, all Urbanspoon traffic will move to Zomato.com, and all Urbanspoon app users will be able to use the Zomato app.
“Zomato has experienced phenomenal growth in recent years, and our customer bases complement each other’s perfectly,” said Keela Robison, Urbanspoon CEO. “Zomato’s significant investments in people and technology will bring Urbanspoon customers, restaurant owners, and food bloggers a number of new capabilities and features. We’re excited to combine our strengths to accelerate growth.”
“The talented Urbanspoon team have done an outstanding job to drive the business forward and cement the brand as a leader in restaurant discovery,” said Joey Levin, CEO of IAC Search & Applications. “Their passion and commitment have created remarkable value for diners, as evidenced by today’s news. We wish them continued success.”
Today’s news follows a huge year for Zomato, which raised $60 million from Sequoia Capital, Info Edge, and Vy Capital in November 2014, bringing the total investment into the company to $113 million to date. Zomato also recently announced plans to add mobile cashless payments and additional discovery features, like being able to search among specific food items, which it will integrate across its apps globally.
Zomato is a leading restaurant search service that provides in-depth information for over a million restaurants across 22 countries. Zomato can be accessed online or via their interactive iOS and Android apps. Zomato’s core features include scanned menus, photos which are sourced by its massive street team across its various cities of presence; users can rate and review restaurants, as well as create their own network of fellow foodies to get personalized recommendations. For more information, please visit http://www.zomato.com or write at firstname.lastname@example.org
Urbanspoon is a leading restaurant discovery app that aggregates reviews from professional food critics, bloggers, and local diners to help people everywhere decide where and what to eat. Available on the web and through its popular iPhone, Android, and Windows applications, Urbanspoon provides reviews for restaurants throughout the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand. For more information visit http://www.urbanspoon.com