Google acquires Zagat

Google has acquired restaurants guide publisher Zagat. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. However, WSJ quoting “a person familiar with the matter” is reporting that that Google paid around $125 million. Zagat had put itself up for sale in 2008, but failed to find a buyer prepared to pay a reported asked for price of $200M.

The first Zagat New York City Restaurants guide was published 30 years ago. Zagat now covers over 100 countries worldwide and a range of leisure activities including dining, travel, nightlife, shopping, golf, movies and music. Zagat has over 350,000 consumers participating in their surveys each year.

Marissa Mayer, VP, Local, Maps and Location Services said in the Google announcement, “I’m thrilled that Google has acquired Zagat. Moving forward, Zagat will be a cornerstone of our local offering—delighting people with their impressive array of reviews, ratings and insights, while enabling people everywhere to find extraordinary (and ordinary) experiences around the corner and around the world.”

In an announcement on the Zagat website, David Zagat said, ““Nina and I will continue to be active in the business as co-Chairs; however, the merger of our resources, expertise and platforms with those of Google will give us the opportunity to greatly expand.” Google’s Mayer calls Zagat’s reviews “one of the earliest forms of user-generated content—gathering restaurant recommendations from friends, computing and distributing ratings before the Internet as we know it today even existed.”

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