It’s been widely reported that Yahoo has long had its sights set on Foursquare, but after failing to negotiate effectively, the company has picked up the next best thing- Jakarta, Indonesia-based Koprol.
Being called the “Asian Foursquare,” Koprol offers a similar location-based service including the omnipresent “check-in” functionality. The company says it focuses on the “intersection of location, community expertise and mobile experiences.”
The price tag put on Foursquare was likely well above the $100M mark, and while the acquisition could have been both good and bad for both Yahoo and Foursquare, picking up Koprol instead was a smarter move given Yahoo’s long-term goals of placing itself at the forefront of emerging markets.
Yahoo announced yesterday that its entered into a partnership with Nokia, which is still the device maker of choice in emerging markets, and Koprol itself is a Web app as opposed to mobile apps, which will make it much more accessible in the markets Yahoo is interested in entering.
It should be interesting to see what Yahoo does with Koprol going forward. The plan to focus on emerging markets in general makes sense for Yahoo, given the fact that its US-based competitors have all but made Yahoo irrelevant in the eyes of consumers. “Emerging markets” gives Yahoo a chance to start fresh and become a go-to portal like it did in the US a decade ago.