As our readers in the UAE know, we already have a fair share of group buying sites – many looking like clones of earlier ones. So far, GoNabit has been fairly successful in the UAE and has a headstart.
Newcomer Cobone is by the Jabbar Group – the guys who own Souq.com – and they must have deep pockets we presume because their ads have been spotted by us all over the Google Content network, YouTube and Facebook.
Then, we have Cityloots, YaDig, Makhsoom, UAEdeals, LowCostDubai… is it overkill?
Whatever it may be – it looks like the site that whose name is synonymous with this category – Groupon – seems to be waiting in the wings to land here in the UAE.
Here’s what CopywriterJournalist has spotted on the website Groupon.ae:
Although Abu Dhabi, Dubai or the UAE are not listed on the Groupon.com website as upcoming cities, and the UAE site’s design and content differs from it, we noticed a perfect match with the design and content of http://www.citydeal.ie
Although Groupon and CityDeals seems to be working in partnership in some countries with a joint logo, and the Groupon UAE website links to City Deals UAE – the Twitter account linked from Groupon.ae is promoting and retweeting Cobone.com. Are we looking at a merger? A JV? And why the need for three brand names?
We wish they had named their Facebook page a little more wisely too. Here’s what it looks like:
So what exactly is is ‘Arabic Emirates’? Maybe the problem is that the ‘Groupon UAE’ page has already been taken by these guys in the picture below who don’t seem to be affiliated with Groupon.com - the ‘creative’ font and the UAE flag sort of gives it away:
Wouldn’t it be really nice if we had businesses surprising us with innovative new ways of doing businesses rather than showing us how good of a ‘me-too’ brand they can be?
Note: Groupon is a late entrant in a market where its business model reached before it. But how many group buying sites would we have before we’ve had enough?
As marketers, we at CopywriterJournalist.com hope that the brand positioning and personalities of these players would be built differently and consumers will have a greater choice. Specialised deal sites for different tastes could be fun too!