Groupon Gets Acquisition Hungry in Mobile
News broke on Saturday of two mobile start-up acquisitions by Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) within hours of each other. First, it was revealed that Groupon had purchased Hyperpublic, a geolocation technology company. Then, just hours later, it was announced that the company had also purchased Kima Labs, the maker of barcode reading Barcode Hero and mobile payment app TapBuy.
As a result of the acquisition, Barcode Hero has announced that its services will be discontinued on February 20, meaning the iPhone app will no longer be available for download after that date. Current users of the app will have until March 16 to download their data. Groupon founder Blake Scholl told TechCrunch that TapBuy will be wound down as well, but on a longer schedule that has not yet been announced.
Kima Labs’ founders Blake Scholl and Jason Crawford both gained their e-commerce knowledge from previous gigs at Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), as did the company’s chief engineer, Andrew Miner. The trio also worked together at Pelago, a company that was also acquired by Groupon.
The acquisitions signal a pick-up in interest of the mobile sector by Groupon. The company wants to put their deals in front of consumers even while they’re on the go. Groupon told TechCrunch, “Kima Labs has developed popular apps that make mobile transactions easier, more fun and more of a possibility for merchants. We’re excited by the team’s ability to create technology that consumers love, and we believe they’ll be strong assets in our pursuit to change the way people shop.”
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