Groupon buys S'pore online startup

Singapore daily deal site, Beeconomic, is now part of global market player's growth strategy in Asian region where it made similar acquisitions in Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Written by Eileen Yu, Senior Contributing Editor

SINGAPORE--Local daily deal site, Beeconomic, has been bought out by global market player Groupon, amid a torrent of acquisitions the latter has made in efforts to extend its reach across the region.

In a statement released Wednesday, the Singapore startup--which began operations in May--will form Groupon's local operations and be part of a regional network that now includes Hong Kong and the Philippines. The Chicago-based company had inked similar acquisition deals with Hong Kong's uBuyiBuy and Taiwan's Atlaspost, where the latter is a location-based social networking site with over 1.2 million users.

Financial details of the merger were not revealed. All three sites will assume Groupon's brand and site design in the coming months, according to the company.

Groupon's president and COO, Rob Solomon, said in the statement: "We see enormous potential in the Asian marketplace and the expansion of Groupon to Hong Kong, Singapore, the Philippines and Taiwan is an important next step. We're excited to leverage an incredibly Internet-savvy customer base to generate increased sales for local merchants."

Since its inception, Beeconomic has sold over 16,000 coupons.

The announcement comes on the heels of rumors that Groupon itself has been bought out by Google in a deal worth US$2.5 billion. Launched in November 2008, Groupon boasts a worldwide subscriber base of 33 million in 35 countries.

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