RetailMeNot.com Acquired by WhaleShark Media

With all the talk of ‘threats from international retailers’ and calls to safe proof our online retail market from international invaders, it’s always nice to shine a spotlight on an Australian business that is doing very well internationally and demonstrates that we don’t have to be limited by location and/or geographical boundaries.

This is true of Stateless Systems, whose founder Guy King and Bevan Clark, have just sold their multi-million dollar coupon website, RetailMeNot, to US-based company WhaleShark Media, Inc.

www.powerretail.com.au - RetailMeNot Sold
Australian-owned coupon website RetailMeNot, sold to WhaleShark Media.

Unsurprisingly the deal is “still sinking in” for King who frustrated with the inability to find a good coupon site, built the original incarnation of RetailMeNot over a weekend. The website which received 10-15 thousand visitors within its first day, now boasts more than 70,000 merchants, restaurants and brand coupons and receives more than 95 million unique visitors per year, making it the most visited online coupon site in the world.

More recently on ‘Cyber Monday’ (just passed) the website had 1.5 million visitors collectively across all of its websites and 21 million visitors in November.

When chatting to King about the acquisition, he comments that  “WhaleShark Media have a sharp established team in this space” and thinks that as the company has a physical presence in the US, “it will help grow the RetailMeNot business, whose core users, merchants and advertisers are based there,” which posed a challenge to the Stateless Systems team who are solely based in Melbourne.

King continued, “At this stage, WhaleShark have only acquired the RetailMeNot.com US and UK sites. We’ll still have a stake in the combined entity, but we’ll be moving the operations over to the US.”

When asked what the acquisition will mean for King and partner Clark  he chuckles and responds, “This doesn’t mean a great deal in the short term, we’ll still be heads down and business as usual. On a personal level, it will allow us a lot of flexiblity for the future.”

King was unsure whether or not Stateless System would now concentrate its efforts on the burgeoning Australia coupon market, however was optimistic about the future of local e-commerce, “There’s a lot more growth in the online deal space – I think there is a bit of a sea change happening here within online and e-commerce, plus the Australian dollar has given retailers a bit of a kick in the pants – hopefully this will move things along in the next year or two.”

“I hope that we can inspire others to do their own thing and show them it is possible to compete on the world stage while we’re over here,” reiterating the company philosophy, “Build something useful and the revenue will follow.”

What’s next for the disruptive Stateless Systems business? King reveals that they are launching a new product next week… so stay tuned!

Read our recent case profiles on RetailMeNot and learn how King and Clark, built RetailMeNot into the world’s most visited coupon site:

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