In December 2010 it was reported that Google’s attempts to buy Groupon had failed. Groupon has ties to local merchants and boasts some 35 million subscribers worldwide.
According to prominent publications such as the Chicago Tribune, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, Groupon decided to stay independent and will potentially pursue an initial public offering of stock.
It was not long before the company’s global expansion plans became clear. In January 2011 Groupon announced the launch of Groupon South Africa via acquisition of daily deal site Twangoo. The same happened in Israel and India.
Many people predicted that Groupon’s entry into South Africa meant the inevitable death of competing websites, but instead of companies backing away from opening or operating competing websites, it seemed to have sparked renewed interest in the field.
Many Groupon competitors – including WiCount, Ubuntu Deal, OneDayOnly, Skoop, JusThenga, VuvuPlaza, 24hoursOnly, EishCoupon and Dealio – are aggressively advertising their services online.
New companies have also emerged, including Openweb’s OpenDeal.co.za and the Avusa backed Zappon.
Avusa Media yesterday announced the launch of Zappon – a group-buying website which promises to offer consumers discounted deals on a variety of products.
“Zappon was successfully launched today in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Pietermaritzburg, Pretoria, East London, Port Elizabeth and Bloemfontein,” said Elan Lohmann, Zappon creator and general manager of Avusa Media LIVE.
“We will be kicking off with local entertainment and shopping deals in Johannesburg and Cape Town first, however, subscribers in the other six cities will be offered products on a daily basis and are eligible for national deals. In general, deals will range from 40-90% off but will typically be at least 50% off.”
OpenDeal in turn was launched to provide consumers with once off broadband deals, explains Openweb founder Keoma Wright.
“Our broadband deals offer a discount between 30% and 80% on a certain product,” said Wright. “We are opening up OpenDeal.co.za to all IT related providers whom would like to use the platform to provide clients with unbelievable value.”
Online deal websites in South Africa << Comments andviews