February 28, 2011, 3:26 PM

Groupon enters mainland China

One of China’s largest Internet service providers is Groupon’s partner in the venture.

Allison Enright

Editor

Lead Photo

A screenshot of the Groupon-backed Chinese site.

Groupon today announced the launch of GaoPeng.com, a joint venture that brings Groupon’s approach to daily deals to consumers in mainland China. Shoppers in Beijing and Shanghai can now access Groupon-powered deals. Groupon says it plans to extend the service to other major cities in China.

Groupon says it is helping to fund GaoPeng.com with other investment coming from the Tencent Collaboration Fund and Yunfeng Capital. The Tencent Collaboration Fund is an offshoot of Tencent Holdings Ltd., one of the largest Internet service providers in China. Tencent says the fund, established in January, provides capital to fuel the growth of innovative web companies. Yunfeng Capital is a private equity firm. Investment terms were not disclosed.

“GaoPeng aims to introduce a sophisticated group-buying business model and an international service standard to the market,” says Yun Ouyang, head of GaoPeng. “We hope to work together with other local group-buying portals to jointly develop this emerging market, which will ultimately benefit the consumers and merchants in China.”

GaoPeng.com joins other daily-deal sites, such as Lashou.com and Meituan.com, that already operate in China’s largest cities.  The GaoPeng venture is Groupon’s second move to tap the Chinese market. It opened a division in Hong Kong in December through its acquisition of local deal provider uBuyiBuy.  

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