Microsoft Targets Groupon With Swedish Deal Site [News Report]

by Avinash Saxena

The company has partnered with Swedish business directory Lokaldelen to launch the similarly named Lokaldealen (which actually translates to “The Deal Shrine”).

Microsoft will be marketing the new deal site, which bears all the hallmarks of a Groupon clone, on its Yahoo portal and its display ad network on Hotmail and Live, according to a blog post from Sweden’s AllaDeals.com, a daily deals aggregator.

So far 13 people have signed up to today’s Lokaldealen deal, or “Dagens deal”: 30 pieces of sushi at a restaurant in Stockholm, for 140 kronor ($22.47), instead of 285 kronor ($45.75).  Local Swedes had 14 and a half hours left at the time of writing to participate.

Sweden is essentially a testbed for Microsoft. If Lokaldealen is successful, it will roll its service out to the rest of Europe. But it must initially lock horns with Groupon, which is the dominant local deals site in Sweden.

Locakdealen is currently active in three of Sweden’s largest cities: Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo and already has a sales force of 300 people dotted around 12 districts in the country, according to business newspaper Dagens Industri.

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