eBay is buying Where, the location-based ad network with one of the more popular smartphone apps for area listings and local coupons.
This may seem like an odd acquisition for a company that prides itself on widening a merchant's reach outside of the local area code. However, a lot of its recent purchases have a decidedly local flavor.
Is this Craigslist envy creeping up again? Not exactly. eBay's minority stake in Craigslist makes it hard to covet what you already partially own. No, this is eBay simply making a shrewd acquisition of yet another app-savvy player with a thick Rolodex of area merchants.
Having a strong real-world presence will help eBay grow the reach of its PayPal financial transaction platform. Playing up to the locals will also come in handy when it completes its acquisition of GSI Commerce
Where's lifestyle slant will also come in handy. This doesn't mean that it's taking on OpenTable
Other dot-com heavies are doing it all wrong. AOL
If eBay's going where I think it's heading -- and it's hard to go out on that kind of limb given the way that it has bobbled its namesake auction site in recent years -- it's going some Where good.
What do you think of eBay's recent purchases? Share your thoughts in the comment box below.
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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is a satisfied eBay user with 178 positive feedbacks to show for it. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. He is also a member of the Rule Breakers analytical team, seeking out the next great growth stock early in its defiance. The Fool has a disclosure policy.