Published: Wed, March 07, 2018
Science | By Dan Gutierrez

Google sells Zagat to restaurant review platform The Infatuation

Google sells Zagat to restaurant review platform The Infatuation

When Google agreed to buy Zagat for $151 million almost seven years ago, the technology giant meant to bring the restaurant review empire into the digital age. Working within The Infatuation's infrastructure and leadership, Zagat will expand user surveys and develop a new tech-driven platform that will create a stronger, more meaningful alternative to other crowdsourced restaurant reviews. Since its founding by Tim and Nina Zagat in 1979 as a compilation of opinions about New York City restaurants by their own friends, Zagat has grown to become synonymous with restaurant reviews in cities across America and beyond.

"Zagat has helped us provide useful and relevant dining results for users across our various products", Google vice-president of product Jen Fitzpatrick said in a joint statement. The company told the New York Times that it plans to keep Zagat as a separate brand. The startup is attuned to the ever-changing mobile market and nuances of social media platforms and could bring Zagat's library of content into its other products.

"How often does an iconic brand like Zagat become available?" said Chris Stang, a co-founder of The Infatuation.

According to the report, Google is selling Zagat to restaurant review site The Infatuation.

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The Zagat app on Google Play still lists itself as a US-only service but The Infatuation is very much an global recommendation service. The company under Google's control over the past seven years and has been run by a small team. "Their innovative approach, and their passion for helping people discover great restaurants and for building community lines up exactly with what we built with Zagat from the very beginning".

"We're just trying to build something that takes this powerful brand and continues to grow it", said Stang. Zagat will remain its own, acting as a "user-generated-content counterpart" to The Infatuation's own services.

The New York Times said the Infatuation's CEO did not disclose the acquisition price.

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