The deal to acquire the global restaurant search brand will also boost Zomato’s presence in the UK alongside Australia, Canada and New Zealand.
Despite having only entered the UK market 18 months ago, Zomato’s expansion strategy has seen them attract more than 1.5 times the traffic of SquareMeal, an established brand with 20 years in the UK market.
The deal marks Zomato’s sixth acquisition in the past six months; a further $20 million investment is projected for the European market in the next year, with the UK forming the hub of Zomato’s European expansion.
UK expansion plans are expected to include establishing Zomato in more cities in the UK (currently in London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Birmingham, and Manchester), doubling staff from just under 40 to over 100, and expanding their on-the-ground team to increase the breadth and depth of their content offering.
Following 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, probably making it one of the largest restaurant search services in the world.
Deepinder Goyal, Founder and CEO of Zomato, said, “Our US entry has been on the cards for a while now, and we’re delighted to be doing so by welcoming Urbanspoon into Zomato. They have a strong presence in the US and the UK, and they also dominate restaurant search in Australia and Canada. 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 to bring the best of both products to our users in the United States as well as the rest of the world.”
The teams will be working closely over the coming months to integrate Urbanspoon into Zomato. In due course of time, all Urbanspoon traffic will move to Zomato.com, and all Urbanspoon app users will be able to use the Zomato app. This acquisition also has a lot to offer to restaurant businesses. 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.
“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.”
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, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Italy.