Print 6 comment(s) - last by MrBlastman.. on Sep 9 at 11:29 AM

Tim Zagat
Zagat Survey will now find a home in Google's local services

In its never-ending quest for world domination, Google announced today that it has acquired Zagat. The Zagat Survey was first started by Tim and Nina Zagat in 1979, and aims to help make consumer more informed about eateries and lodging (among other categories) around the world. 

Zagat corporate overview page notes that:

With ratings and reviews based on the opinions of over 350,000 surveyors from around the globe, Zagat Survey has become the world's most trusted source to help consumers make informed decisions about restaurants, nightspots, hotels, attractions and other leisure activities. 

For its part, Google plans to roll Zagat into its "local reviews" services, and Business Insider believes that the purchase will mesh nicely with Google Offers. 

"With Zagat, we gain a world-class team that has more experience in consumer based-surveys, recommendations and reviews than anyone else in the industry, said Marissa Mayer," Google Vice President of Local, Maps and Location Services. "Zagat has established a trusted and well-loved brand the world over, operating in 13 categories and more than 100 cities. The Zagats have demonstrated their ability to innovate and to do so with tremendous insight. Their surveys may be one of the earliest forms of UGC (user-generated content)—gathering restaurant recommendations from friends, computing and distributing ratings before the Internet as we know it today even existed."

There is no word on how much Google paid for Zagat, but the company was on the auction block for $200 million USD back in 2008.

With this latest purchase, Google is showing that it's not afraid to go after the big guns in a wide variety of markets -- Android (iOS, Blackberry OS), Google Offers (Groupon), Google+ (Facebook), etc.

Updated 9/8/2011 @ 5:19pm

TechCrunch is reporting that while the sale price of Zagat still hasn't been disclosed, it is most definitely below $66 million USD. The reasoning behind this is that any transaction price over that threshold would automatically signal an FTC antitrust review.

In any case, $66M is a far cry from the $200M asking price three years ago.

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This makes sense...
By MrBlastman on 9/8/2011 1:00:29 PM , Rating: 3
It should complement Google's offerings well. Going forward though, it might lead me to question the authenticity of any Zagat rating, though, given Google's propensity towards allowing people to "buy" rankings in their search.

RE: This makes sense...
By maven81 on 9/8/2011 9:47:55 PM , Rating: 2
Zagat seems pretty questionable as it is. Just last week I passed by a closed restaurant that had Zagat sticker on the door boasting of a high rating, and right next to it was a notice saying it had flunked a sanitation inspection...

RE: This makes sense...
By MrBlastman on 9/9/2011 11:29:49 AM , Rating: 3
Have you ever cooked anything on a cast-iron skillet or in a Dutch Oven (not the one where you pull the sheets over your wife and fart...)?

The reason food tastes so good when you use one of the two is because you never wash them after cooking. If you did, they'd rust due to the iron. Instead, you simply keep them well oiled. Over time, a nice layer of old, cooked food builds up in the pores which adds tremendously to the flavor.

So, I'm not surprised the restaurant failed the inspection. :P (Just trying to come up with a possible explanation)

"The whole principle [of censorship] is wrong. It's like demanding that grown men live on skim milk because the baby can't have steak." -- Robert Heinlein

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