After raising $700 million in its IPO in December, Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) has quickly put the money to work, striking a variety of acquisitions, such as for Adku and Mertado.com. These early-stage companies are in hot categories like social networking and “Big Data” (which leverages huge amounts of user data to personalize web experiences). And just this past week, Groupon struck two new deals.
One was for Hyperpublic, which develops technology that makes it easier for users to find the right places to buy things by analyzing real-time data from social networks. The other deal was for Kima Labs, a San Francisco-based company that develops applications for mobile shopping. Kima Labs has a strong team that includes people who have worked at companies like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Pelago (which developed a location-based social network called Whrrl).
Groupon realizes that its core technology lags other hot companies like Facebook, LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) and Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA), so it is moving aggressively to bolster things, such as with establishing a development office in Silicon Valley.
And no doubt, despite the glut of deals already reached, aggressive acquisitions will continue to be a key part of Groupon’s strategy.
Tom Taulli runs the InvestorPlace blog IPO Playbook, a site dedicated to the hottest news and rumors about initial public offerings. He also is the author of “The Complete M&A Handbook”, “All About Short Selling” and “All About Commodities.” Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli or reach him via email. As of this writing, he did not own a position in any of the aforementioned securities.