Online reviews aggregator Yelp continues to step up its international push, announcing recently its first publicly announced acquisition: the Hamburg-based ratings and reviews site Qype.
The deal, reportedly worth $50 million, helps Yelp secure the sales force, user base, and user-generated content of one of the biggest local review sites in Europe. It also supports Yelp’s internationalization strategy: last September, the company debuted in Asia and launched Yelp Singapore.
Established in March 2006, Qype has since grown to have 25 million unique monthly European visitors, with operations in key markets like Germany, United Kingdom, France, Switzerland, Austria, Ireland, Poland, Spain, Italy, and Brazil.
Said Yelp founder and CEO Jeremy Stoppelman in a press release: “Our mission is to become the defacto choice for local search globally, connecting people with great local businesses all over the world. We’ve built a great foundation, launching Yelp communities in 19 countries so far. Bringing Qype into the fold will enable us to accelerate our international growth and increase our benefit to consumers and businesses.”
He added, “Qype’s established European sales force will also bring more local business owners into the Yelp ecosystem, which in turn will bolster our mission to connect people with great local businesses all over the world.”
Qype has generated over 2 million reviews of local businesses – mostly in Germany and the UK – and these will therefore be combined with 30 million Yelp reviews and 78 million unique monthly visitors. (The deal will bring Yelp’s total to over 100 million global users.)
“There is no question that Yelp has been a leading force in the local business reviews space for years,” said Qype CEO Ian Brotherston. “On behalf of our team here, we are thrilled that our continued hard work will play a significant role in accelerating Yelp’s leadership position in the world of local business recommendations.”