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South Africa’s group buying market adds another contestant with the launch of Zappon.co.za, just two and a half months after project initiation. The startup, owned by South African media company Avusa Media, joins many other Groupon like deals sites in the country. The only difference is it comes into to the game with the backing of Avusa’s brands.
“The daily deal space is on the cusp of maturing in South Africa,” says Zappon creator and General Manager of Avusa Media LIVE, Elan Lohmann. “Other players – both local and international entrants – have been working to create the beginnings of a market for us and we feel that now is undoubtedly the right time for us to enter.”
Zappon will compete for deals with the recently purchased Twangoo, now Groupon SA, by group buying giant — Groupon. The purchase has proved the potential of group buying in South Africa. Other current players include Wicount, Eishcoupon and Vuvuplaza.
Avusa hopes Zappon will be a strong player in this space. This hope is pinned on the existing Avusa brands and the loyalty of audiences for titles such as Sunday Times, The Times and Sowetan. The company is also hoping to use its established online brand presences such as TimesLIVE and SowetanLIVE, to Zappon’s advantage.
“From an advertising perspective, we definitely have a competitive advantage,” comments Lohmann. “Not only do our existing advertisers and suppliers inherently trust our brands but we are currently offering clients massive media exposure to roughly two million readers a day via print, direct mail, website and social media channels – all at no charge. Which other group-buying platform can offer the credibility and trust that brands such as Sunday Times can provide, at no cost?”
Just like other daily deals offerings, Zappon will advertise a new deal each day via the various channels, all targeted to different cities. Deals will range from 40-90% off and are typically at least 50% off.
“We know that we are entering into an incredibly competitive market at the moment but feel this is perfect timing for the launch of Zappon.co.za,” concludes Lohmann. “At Avusa we’ve rallied all of our resources – both internally and with the assistance of external partners – to turn around another great product for our consumers. The local daily deal market is hotting up and our goal is to ensure that Avusa is the first big media player in SA to make a real impact.”