Yelp has strengthened its focus on online restaurant reservations with the acquisition of SeatMe, a San Francisco based web and iPad app developer that has created a streamlined reservations solution for restaurant and bar owners across the US.
The acquisition will see Yelp’s users being given an additional option for scheduling restaurant reservations without leaving the app’s experience, tracking down a restaurant’s website or phone number.
SeatMe’s original setup allows restaurant owners to accept reservations via their website, while an iPad app gives restaurant staff the ability to text guests when their table is ready, add walk-in diners to the guest book, and accurately quote wait times for open tables.
The SeatMe acquisition cost Yelp $2.2 million in cash and approximately 263,000 shares of its common stock, bringing the total purchase price to around $12.7 million.
The company’s original reservations partner, OpenTable, wasn’t mentioned in the SeatMe acquisition announcement, but Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman stated that SeatMe would compliment “our existing partnerships.” Now that Yelp owns its own reservations system, one can expect the OpenTable partnership to lapse in the future.
“SeatMe has developed a truly compelling product for restaurants and bars of any size,” said Stoppelman. “With approximately one million U.S. businesses listed on Yelp in the restaurant and nightlife categories, we believe SeatMe will add online reservation capabilities to a broader market while complementing our existing partnerships. Additionally, SeatMe provides us with yet another way to close the loop between local businesses and consumers.”
Yelp’s focus on food services recently grew via new partnerships with delivery.com and Eat24, both of which provide food delivery services from within the Yelp app. Appointment services for spas, salons, dentists and more are set to come online in the future.