Yelp is to buy the online reservation service, SeatMe. The popular site will acquire the facility for a cool $12.7 million. That would be money well spent.
SeatMe had a row with OpenTable, the eatery booking platform, but that is in the past now. Yelp acquired the seating arrangement site for approximately $12.7 million out of which $2.2 million paid in cash and remaining are 263,000 common stock shares. The online reservation services rendered by SeatMe are partially web-based facilities and partly meant to serve as an iPad application. Bosses in restaurants can now include a reservation capability on their personal website or Facebook status. As for the special app, it allows for the management of tables on a footloose basis. Some other features include: texting the clientele when a table is set for their dining experience and reminding the host about a customer’s idiosyncrasies and preferences.
Yelp co-founder and CEO, Jeremy Stoppelman, said, "I am excited to welcome SeatMe's employees and customers to Yelp." Through this acquisition, Yelp CEO hopes "to close the loop between local businesses and consumers." Meanwhile, SeatMe co-founder and CEO Alexander Kvamme is also excited to join Yelp team. He said, "We are committed to providing an innovative, easy-to-use and affordable restaurant management system that can be accessed anytime, anywhere. We target a large, underserved market of restaurant and nightlife establishments, and we're excited about the opportunity to significantly extend our market reach."
Meanwhile, SeatMe’s former rival OpenTable has been the power source behind Yelp’s orderly reservation system. What this acquisition will mean for OpenTable is an open question. Only the future will decide it in a definitive manner. Yelp’s CEO was taciturn about the future of OpenTable. The whole team at SeatMe will be shifted to Yelp’s premises. They will handle bookings for flashy nightclubs and fancy restaurants not to mention health spas, dentists’ clinics and beauty salons. All this doesn’t affect SeatMe customers though. Thanks to the merger, you can have your choice of venue for visits and jaunts. SeatMe has a lot of work ahead of it as it gets dressed for success. OpenTable may be replaced although it has an advantage which is that it was there first.