The Russian social network Odnoklassniki has announced to partner with Groupon. The deal will allow Groupon to publish their ads on the social network as Groupon extensively does on Facebook. The cooperation was to expect because of Groupon’s heavy spending on social networks but also because both companies have something else in common: Digital Sky Technologies, the company that owns Odnoklassniki through the Mail.ru Group is also major investor in Groupon. If we follow that thought a strong Groupon presence in Russia is likely as Digital Sky Technologies also owns 100% of Mail.ru and about 25% of VKontakte, which are the other two dominating social networks in Russia. Groupon has recently acquired their Russian clone Darberry.
The first stage of the partnership will involve the launch of a joint service between Odnoklassniki social network and Groupon. The Odnoklassniki audience will be granted access to Groupon’s offers to purchase various goods and services. Odnoklassniki users can purchase Groupon services without leaving the social network website. The service includes features enabling users to follow friends’ actions, invite friends to take “liked” offers and make one-click purchases.
Ilya Shirokov, VP of Mail.Ru Group and the Head of Odnoklassniki comments: “This joint service signals the beginning of Mail.Ru Group’s enhanced collaboration with Groupon which is further expected to embrace Mail.ru Group’s other projects. Buying discount vouchers on the internet is a growing trend and we continue to deliver value to our customers by getting involved in the newest global trends. Our cooperation with Groupon makes Odnoklassniki the first social network in the world to offer its members the full scope of the significant discounts that social commerce offers. Thus, our audience will have the ability to use their social graph more effectively”.