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[UPDATE] Google’s Acquisition of Zagat Will Make Finding Good Food Easy
By Christopher Weaver

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Google has announced today that they have acquired Zagat, a restaurant rating site, for an undisclosed sum. We think the plan is to work Zagat’s reviews into Google’s search, maps, and places which would give those results more value. It would also remove the need to search through additional websites to find the answers you seek, since theoretically all could be found after the initial search. This could effectively kill the need for sites like Urban Spoon and Yelp, which reminds me of Google’s recent acquisition of ITA. ITA is travel industry software which is used by the likes of Travelocity and Kayak to search through all available flights and hotels. Google must continue to license the ITA software to their competitors for 5 years and then they’re on their own. I make this comparison because Google is the go to search engine of the world and if they can deliver their own results ahead of competitors, than the competition has little hope. This goes for Zagat in regards to food finding/reviews and ITA results for booking trips.

Zagat has been rating restaurants for 32 years and was founded by Tim and Nina Zagat. The company is actively reviewing in over 100 cities, but you can bet that Google will beef that up. Before the age of mobile phones and computing, Zagat put out a pocket sized restaurant guide and have since evolved to the web. With all that experience, it’s no wonder that Google scooped up this company and its team.

Update: According to the Wall Street Journal, Google paid $125 million to acquire Zagat.

Via:Google Blog


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