Zomato buys up yet another rival, this time in Poland

Zomato is on a shopping binge in central and eastern Europe.
Zomato is on a shopping binge in central and eastern Europe.
Image: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni
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Zomato, an Indian restaurant locator, is continuing its international shopping spree, acquiring four companies in three months.

The latest addition is Gastronauci—a Polish restaurant search service. Founded in 2007, the Warsaw-headquartered firm has a database of 26,000 restaurants, which gradually will be integrated into Zomato. The companies did not disclose the acquisition price.

Gastronauci fits into Zomato’s global ambitions: In July, The Delhi-based startup said it wants to reach 22 international markets in 24 months.

Zomato is currently present in 13 countries and with the acquisition of Gastronauci, Czech Republic’s Lunchtime and Slovakia-based Obedovat, it will have presence in 16 countries. This rapid international expansion comes on the back of the $37 million funding Zomato received from Sequoia Capital and InfoEdge in October 2013, taking its valuation to $161 million.

In particular, it is looking at central and eastern Europe closely—three of its four acquisitions are in Europe. And the company is eyeing another possible acquisition in the region, Zomato CEO Deepinder Goyal told Quartz.

The company is focusing on central and eastern Europe as it doesn’t have much competition as opposed to other parts of Europe where people already have access to Zomato-like services. ”It is an easy win for us,” said Goyal.

Here are Zomato’s other recent acquisitions:

MenuMania: It acquired MenuMania, New Zealand’s top restaurant search service, in July 2014 in an undisclosed all-cash deal. The acquisition came after Zomato’s efforts to grow organically didn’t take off the way the company had hoped.

Lunchtime and Obedovat: The Czech Republic-based lunch menu search company, Lunchtime, and Slovakia-based Obedovat, were acquired by Zomato in August for a sum of $3.25 million.

The company has already integrated MenuMania on its platform. But for Lunchtime and Obedovat, Zomato “needs to build new features,” Goyal said. Restaurants in the central and eastern Europe change their lunch menus everyday, Goyal said. So, the restaurant owner has to inform the platform of the changes. Zomato currently doesn’t have this feature.

Acquisitions aside, Zomato is also looking to start operations from scratch in Lebanon and Malaysia. Zomato makes profits in India, and breaks even in the UAE. In the other markets, the company will have to invest for a while before it can focus on the bottomline.

The big one is, off course, Canada where Zomato will start operations this year. Yelp dominates the Canadian market and that will be the first time these two companies will directly compete against each other in a market dominated by Yelp.