Seoul, Korea - Groupon, the world's largest social commerce company, has decided to close its Groupon Korea operation. A Groupon Korea official said on March 4, "A high-ranking official of Groupon main office notified all employees of Groupon Korea that the headquarters has decided to liquidate the Korean operations."
"The company will focus its effort on gaining market share in Korea through TicketMonster that it completed a merger early this year," he added.
Groupon Korea will scale down its operation gradually and fold the business entirely by the end of the first half, with all remaining customer reward points and balances refunded by then. The 160 or so employees of Groupon Korea won't be transferred to TicketMonster and instead will be subject to an early retirement program that includes severance pays.
Groupon is the largest social commerce company in the world with US$5.04 billion in sales revenue in 2012. Established in March 2011, Groupon Korea has lagged behind the homegrown brands such as Coupang and TicketMonster. In November last year, Groupon announced that it would acquire TicketMonster at $260 million.
At the time, Groupon CEO Eric Lefkofsky said, "What's important is how Groupon Korea can help TicketMonster become No. 1 in Korea's social commerce market," suggesting that his company would use TicketMonster as the centerpiece of Korea strategy.
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