Yelp acquires Toronto-based marketing startup Turnstyle Analytics

San Francisco-based Yelp Inc. will soon be able to help its small and medium-sized business (SMB) clients offer their customers free Wi-Fi that doubles as a marketing platform, thanks to its recent acquisition of Toronto-based startup Turnstyle Analytics Inc.

Under the terms of the acquisition, announced Tuesday, Yelp paid approximately $20 million USD in cash for all of Turnstyle’s outstanding capital stock.

In an April 4 statement, Yelp co-founder and CEO Jeremy Stoppelman said the company was excited to add Turnstyle’s services to its product offerings, noting that Turnstyles free public Wi-Fi services have proven to be “an effective retention and loyalty program that helps businesses be more successful.”

In the same statement, Turnstyle co-founder and CEO Devon Wright called the acquisition an “exciting opportunity,” emphasizing that he looked forward to expanding and leveraging Yelp’s resources.

“Together we’ll be able to help even more local businesses improve their customer retention, driving more repeat business,” Wright said in the statement.

Founded in 2012, Turnstyle currently provides Wi-Fi as a digital marketing and customer retention tool to nearly 3,500 businesses worldwide. The company’s platform invites consumers to tap into free guest Wi-Fi by using their email addresses, which its business clients then use to re-engage customers in the future.

The company also helps clients build highly targeted customer contact lists and provides access to analytics tools that measure statistics such as visit frequency and duration.

By incorporating Turnstyle’s services into its product offerings, not only is Yelp now capable of helping business clients use their guest Wi-Fi as a platform to drive repeat customer visits through in-store marketing and sales, but can add the startup’s analytics to its already-extensive online and mobile search data.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Eric Emin Wood
Eric Emin Wood
Former editor of ITBusiness.ca turned consultant with public relations firm Porter Novelli. When not writing for the tech industry enjoys photography, movies, travelling, the Oxford comma, and will talk your ear off about animation if you give him an opening.

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