Business Standard: January 30, 2015
New Delhi: Online restaurant search service company Zomato continues to be on an acquisition spree. The firm, launched in 2008 and valued at $660 million, on Thursday announced it had acquired Turkey-based Mekanist.
Though the company didn’t disclose the size of the deal, Deepinder Goyal, founder and chief executive, said it was one of the largest, apart from the Urbanspoon acquisition. As such, sources said it was estimated at $35-50 million.
A few days earlier, Zomato had acquired Urbanspoon in the US for $52 million. With the acquisition of Mekanist, the seventh by Zomato in the past six months, the restaurant search company will expand into several cities in Turkey.
Its coverage will increase from about 27,500 restaurants in Istanbul and Ankara to about 75,000 across the country, serving users about three million times a month.
Mekanist was founded eight years ago by Ali Servet Eyüboglu and Eren.
Zomato had forayed into Turkey in November 2013, making its website and apps available to users in Turkish and English. Through the next two months, the company will roll out an integrated product in the two languages for users and business owners.
Zomato has a team of 27 people in Turkey, most of who are is based out of Istanbul.
“Mekanist has established itself as one of the heavyweights in the online restaurant search and discovery space in Turkey. We’re excited to be joining forces with them as we continue to grow in one of our most important markets. Mekanist is one of the first and most successful tech start-ups to emerge from the Turkish ecosystem and we’re excited about it becoming a part of Zomato,” said Zomato’s Goyal.
Mekanist has about 190,000 listed establishments such as popular restaurants, cafes and bars, along with about 500,000 reviews from its 1.5 million signed-up user base on the web and mobile platforms.
Mekanist’s entire traffic and restaurant-related content will now move to Zomato, while Mekanist app users will be able to use the Zomato app. Also, restaurants could benefit from Zomato’s hyper-local advertising model, and target customers. The ‘Zomato for Business’ app suite will help restaurant businesses connect and engage with customers.
Zomato is backed by private equity investors, including Sequoia Capital and Info Edge India.
In November 2014, the company had raised $60 million. The fund infusion was led by Info Edge and Vy Capital; Sequoia Capital also participated in the funding round.
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