With Groupon,the American-founded group buying company planning a $30 billion IPO, an offering worth more than Google’s IPO, there are obvious questions as to whether this model will stand the test of time, particularly in China. Groupon’s market dominance while momentarily secure in the U.S., has not extended to the world’s most populous nation. In a two week span during March of this year, Groupon’s Chinese subsidiary Gaopeng.com generated only $289,000 in sales, a tiny amount in comparison to the $15.2 million earned by China’s largest group buying site Lashou.com. For investors seeking to sink capital into the group buying industry in China, the choice between thousands of competitors may prove daunting. Yet China has a large domestic market keen on saving money meaning that there is likely more than one titan of the industry waiting to be discovered. Whether businesses will continue cooperate with group buying sites is yet another important factor that will determine the success of the group buying industry.

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Jason Lim

Jason is an Australian born Chinese living in Beijing, specializing in entrepreneurship, start-ups and the investment eco-system in China, especially in the tech and social area.