Google Buys Restaurant-Review Company Zagat
Google Inc. agreed to buy restaurant-review company Zagat Survey LLC. The 32-year old company provides consumers a comprehensive view of where to eat, drink, stay, shop and play worldwide based on millions of reviews and ratings.
The deal is further proof of Google's objective of being the dominant player in marketing to local businesses. In a blog post Thursday, Google said "with Zagat, we gain a world-class team that has more experience in consumer based-surveys, recommendations and reviews than anyone else in the industry."
Zagat—well known for its pocket-size, burgundy-color guides—provides reviews of accommodations, restaurants, bars and shopping locations for more than 100 cities. Google promised that the company would be "a cornerstone of our local offering—delighting people with their impressive array of reviews, ratings and insights."
Google also plans to integrate Zagat, based in New York, with its search and mapping products.
The acquisition highlights how the mobile market continues to attract attention from technology vendors and consumers. Zagat has a "Zagat To Go" app that costs $9.99 and can be used on Apple Inc.'s iPhone and iPod Touch, as well as app options for Research In Motion Ltd.'s BlackBerry and other smartphones and mobile devices.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, however the founders Nina and Tim Zagat, said they would remain a part of the company.