A few weeks ago, Teambuy took the industry, merchants and consumers by surprise and filed for bankruptcy protection. Many had questions and concerns over what Teambuy shareholders and board members were to do concerning creditors, merchants owed money and consumers owed credits. Many of those questions remain unanswered.
However, what can be answered and confirmed is that nCrowd, an ecommerce company from the USA and a Deal provider themselves, has officially been given approval to acquire Teambuy, Menupalace & Dealfind, among other assets. So the company will not be left in Bankruptcy, instead nCrowd will take over operations. In fact, they have already taken over as is evident by the url redirect from Teambuy or Dealfind to nCrowd.ca.
Now, what does this mean:
For Merchants and creditors: given the bankruptcy proceedings, it is doubtful that Merchants and creditors will see their money back. However, it is more than likely that nCrowd will provide rather favourable terms for merchants who would like to engage with them going forward. It makes sense that they start being aggressive with merchants terms in order to repair the lost good faith and trust permeating throughout the merchant community. Perhaps, through some of these favourable terms, merchants can recoup some money otherwise lost during the Teambuy/Dealfind bankruptcy. However, that may not be enough. Quite frankly, merchants can choose other Deal providers that have far better reputations and solid track records of merchant repayments. Why would merchants take on more risk by engaging with nCrowd when they could simply do business with other, less risky, Deal providers in Canada instead? Who are these less risky, top quality Deal Providers? Have a read at our posts over the next few days to read some of our recommendations.
For consumers: It is probably a good bet that nCrowd will also provide consumers with aggressive promotions as well in order to get them engaged once again. Will it work? It depends how burned and how upset certain customers are, and certainly depends on how good the promotions are. Although consumers cannot resist a great offer, they will most certainly resist a company that has serviced them poorly. nCrowd has a large database of customers to engage with in Canada. They adopted Teambuy/Dealfind’s 3 million subscriber list. That is a significant database to communicate with and to drive sales from.
Now that Teambuy has been acquired by nCrowd, we look forward to seeing them focus on publishing more local offers. Hopefully they will not only focus on product deals but rather try and increase the inventory of local offers in Canada.
In terms of the Canadian Deals Landscape, well, it now looks a bit different. The top Deal Providers in the Country are:
Groupon (national), nCrowd(national), Tuango(Quebec), Wagjag(national but not Quebec), Living Social(national), Buytopia(national), Social Shopper(BC), Travelzoo(national) and Underpar(national).
There are other deal providers, (have a look at the Deals & Coupons Ecosystem), but the above are the largest ones in the country (although we are not confident that Living Social will be sticking around in Canada).
Now, although favourable terms to merchants or promotions to consumers are fine, nCrowd will most likely experience that Canada is very different than the USA in terms of forgiveness. Meaning, it will be a while before they repair the damage caused by Dealfind and the eventual Teambuy bankruptcy. Promotions simply won’t cut it. A quality service will. As mentioned earlier, a long term PR campaign should be executed in order to sincerely engage Canadian Merchants, Consumers and media.
It will be interesting to see how nCrowd executives approach Canada.