More than seven years after it was incorporated into the Google family, restaurant review service Zagat is changing hands once again.
Google has reportedly agreed to sell Zagat to The Infatuation, a startup whose core business is restaurant recommendation services. In its new abode, Zagat is expected to operate as a separate brand.
With several new players jostling to establish themselves in the restaurant tracking field, it will be a challenge for Zagat to remain relevant.
Meanwhile, the buyout could give a new lease of life to the company provided it adapts to the changed market scenario.
The going was tough for Zagat ever since Google acquired it for $151 million, with the aim of vitalizing its search results with the latest restaurant reviews.
Over the years, Zagat’s service lost relevance due to lack of innovation and the app become almost redundant, ultimately contributing nothing to various Google services, including Maps.
The primary reason behind Zagat’s downfall was a new strategy adopted by Google’s to develop its restaurant database organically. While it is unlikely that Google sold Zagat for the sale proceedings, it is widely perceived that the move was aimed at freeing a non-performing unit from its fold for the benefit of both the parties.
Google had subjected the Zagat app to a major revamp a couple of years ago, giving a much-needed push to its falling value.