Global restaurant search app, Zomato has acquired Urbanspoon for an undisclosed amount in an all-cash deal, marking the platform’s entry into the Australian market.
The deal also establishes Zomato’s presence in the United States and adds to its already dominant position in the United Kingdom and New Zealand, with all Urbanspoon users – as well as restaurant and user-generated content and features – set to be migrated across to the new platform in the coming months.
Zomato’s core content features include scanned menus, and photos that are sourced by its massive feet-on-street team across its various cities of presence; users can rate and review restaurants, as well as create their own network of foodies for personalised recommendations.
The move will see Zomato hire around 300 people in Australia in the very short term, with an investment of AUD$10 million planned over the coming year to consolidate its market leadership position.
After the acquisition, Zomato will be present in 22 countries across the world. Its restaurant coverage will increase from about 300,000 restaurants to more than 1 million restaurants across the globe. Zomato’s traffic will more than double from about 35 million visits per months to more than 80 million visits per month, making it among the largest restaurant search companies in the world.
Deepinder Goyal, Founder and CEO of Zomato, said, “Our Australia entry has been on the cards for a while now, and we’re delighted to be doing so by welcoming Urbanspoon into Zomato. We launched our New Zealand operations last year as a pilot for the Australia market, and we are confident that we now have a playbook to succeed in Australia.”
“The Urbanspoon acquisition gives us a significant head-start in Australia. Urbanspoon has a huge following, and is home to legions of people who are as passionate about food as we are.”
“We will soon be integrating the two products to bring the best of both products to our users in Australia as well as the rest of the world.”
Goyal said both teams would be working closely over the coming months to integrate Urbanspoon into Zomato. In due course, all Urbanspoon traffic will move to Zomato.com, and all Urbanspoon app users will be able to use the Zomato app in Australia.
“This acquisition also has a lot to offer restaurant businesses in Australia. Zomato’s hyperlocal advertising model, combined with the Zomato for Business app suite, will allow restaurant businesses to reach out to, connect with, and engage customers like never before,” he added.
Keela Robison, Urbanspoon CEO, said: “Zomato has experienced phenomenal growth in recent years, and our customer bases complement each other perfectly.”
“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 across the board.”
“Keela and 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.”
This is Zomato’s sixth acquisition in the last six months, and the biggest one. Zomato has recently acquired local dominant restaurant search players in New Zealand, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Italy.