Groupon website to go live in UAE today
Bargain hunters in Abu Dhabi and Dubai are today able to snap up special cut-price deals on Groupon for the first time as the world’s largest coupon website has gone live in both cities.
US-based Groupon offers a special deal from a local business every day, giving steep discounts of as much as 70 per cent on meals, spa treatments and other services. A certain number of users have to select a particular offer before anyone can take advantage of it.
The opening deal in Abu Dhabi is for a 90-minute colour facial treatment and Indian head massage at Yengi Nails and Day Spa in Khalifa Street. The treatment is on offer for Dh190 instead of the normal Dh410. At 9.30am eight people had accepted the offer, enough to make the deal active.
Users in Dubai are able to enjoy a Greek meal for Dh50 instead of Dh100 at the Elia restaurant in the Majestic hotel, Mankhool Road. By 9.30am the deal was confirmed after 18 people applied.
Groupon’s Abu Dhabi and Dubai websites have been running for several months but only to accept registrations from prospective users – today is the first time offers have been available in the cities. The company is offering new subscribers starter credits worth up to Dh120.
Groupon will provide tough competition for existing local coupon sites. There are more than a dozen websites that offer similar online group buying services in the UAE including GoNabit and Cobone.
Groupon, a two-year-old startup based in Chicago, has some 35 million subscribers in about 250 markets around the world. The company, run by its 30-year-old founder, Andrew, Mason, eploys about 3,000 people.
On Monday (February 28) Groupon lauched a coupon website, Gaopeng.com, in China. The company is understood to be planning a $15bn share offer after last year turning down a $6 billion (Dh22.2b) bid from search giant Google.
Groupon’s worldwide sales last year hit $760 million and it is aiming to top $1bn in 2011.
Updated: March 1, 2011 04:00 AM