Google to launch Groupon-like daily deals service

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Google is creating a US-only daily deals service and competitor to Groupon called Google Offers. Google reportedly tried to buy Groupon with a multibillion-dollar offer last month, but was rejected by the deals website.

Google confirmed its plans, first reported January 20 by Mashable, to Direct Marketing News, but declined to provide additional specifics.

“Google is communicating with small businesses to enlist their support and participation in a test of a pre-paid offers and vouchers program,” the Mountain View, CA-based company said in a statement. “This initiative is part of an ongoing effort at Google to make new products, such as the recent Offer Ads beta, that connect businesses with customers in new ways."

The company declined to disclose additional details about Google Offers. The service will be a “new product to help potential customers and clientele find great deals in their area through a daily e-mail,” according to a CNN report that cited a Google fact sheet.

The move follows Google's failed acquisition of Groupon in December.

Groupon recently hired Vertica Systems, a real-time analytics platform provider, to analyze subscriber behavior and scale its business intelligence capabilities. One week earlier, Groupon raised $950 million in funding to support its infrastructure and to help it expand, and it acquired deal websites SoSasta in India, Grouper in Israel and Twangoo in South Africa.  

Groupon declined to comment on the matter.

Google, meanwhile, said January 20 that it earned $8.2 billion in advertising revenue in the fourth quarter of 2010, a 26% increase compared with Q4 2009. The company's ad revenue jumped 23.4% for full-year 2010 to $28.2 billion.

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