Groupon: China or Bust
Groupon has been eying China for sometime. But fierce local competition, failures of other online services (e.g. e-bay.cn, google.cn) and culture issues may have prevented a Shanghi office from opening. So after months (if not years) of toying around with the idea, Groupon is finally opening shop in China with the brand GaoPeng.
I wonder why Groupon has opted for a different approach in China than other developing markets. Previously it has grown intentionally through acquisition. Last summer, it bought the Russian clone Darberry.ru. Around the same time in Brazil, Groupon got ClubeUrbano (which had a shaky start). And in India, they went with SoSasta as their choice of a local buy.
So why a different approach in China? Is it because of the fierce competition that leaves no clear-cut winner to acquire? Or perhaps its the old adage – if you want something done right, you’ve to do it yourself.
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