Editor's Note: The following post was originally published on ebayinkblog on April 20, 2011.
eBay Inc. has reached a definitive agreement to acquire WHERE, a leading location media company and local discovery mobile application. WHERE is expected to enhance the company’s position in local and mobile commerce and deepen its ability to connect retailers with consumers.
Founded in 2004, WHERE is a Boston-based business at the forefront of the intersection of local and mobile commerce (two of four trends we have clearly been focusing on for some time now – the other two being social and digital). WHERE operates a leading local mobile discovery application – WHERE – and a leading location-based advertising network – WHERE Ads. Through these services WHERE provides personalized, hyper-local advertising, offers, and deals to millions of mobile consumers across North America. More than 120,000 retailers, brands and small merchants use WHERE daily to reach new audiences and deliver real-time foot traffic to their doorstep.
We’ve talked about how much I enjoy my job here on Ink in the past. From covering our earnings calls in real-time to traveling to events both near and far, it is both an exciting and rewarding role I get to play in the grand scheme of things. However, I really think the most rewarding part of this job is getting the opportunity to work with and meet intelligent, interesting, unique people - both inside the organization and out. So being the one who gets to publicly welcome the WHERE team into the eBay Inc. family is right up there.
It is a happy coincidence that our agreement to acquire WHERE comes on the first day of the O’Reilly Where 2.0 conference in Santa Clara. A conference that Mok Oh, Chief Innovation Officer, WHERE will be speaking at and one I will be live-blogging from on Thursday morning when eBay’s Jack Abraham (founder and former CEO of Milo.com) will be taking the stage to talk about the future of shopping. He’ll no doubt be touching on the fact that local and mobile commerce companies like WHERE are blurring the lines between offline and online commerce.
In the case of WHERE, by delivering personalized, hyper-local advertising, offers, and deals to shoppers on their mobile phones, we see a huge opportunity for retailers and brands to reach more buyers, and for consumers to get more choice and value when they shop.
I’ll be most interested to see how eBay integrates PayPal’s online payments technology into the WHERE mobile application. eBay Inc. expects that this integration will allow consumers to find, shop and pay for great local deals anytime, anywhere and help retailers reach local buyers in real-time.
Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter of 2011. eBay Inc. does not expect this acquisition to have a material impact on its financial guidance as issued both in conjunction with its fourth quarter earnings release on January 19, 2011 and updated on March 28, 2011.
Forward Looking Statement
This blog post contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, and actual results could differ materially from those discussed. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, the possibility that the transaction may not close, the reaction of the users of WHERE’s services, the future growth of WHERE’s business, the reaction of competitors to the transaction and the possibility that integration following the transaction may be more difficult than expected. More information about potential factors which could affect our business and results is included in eBay's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010, its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, its Current Reports on Form 8-K, and other periodic filings. All forward-looking statements are based on information available to eBay on the date hereof, and eBay assumes no obligation to update such statements.