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SK Telecom to buy mobile loyalty app Shopkick

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SK Telecom to buy mobile loyalty app Shopkick
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SK Planet Inc., a subsidiary of SK Telecom, has recently acquired the US-based Shopkick mobile loyalty app. Shopkick is a loyalty program in which consumers participate using a smartphone – something everyone has in their pocket today. It is also the number one real-world shopping app used in South Korea.

“Our vision is to build the most beautiful and useful digital user interface on top of the physical shopping world,” said Cyriac Roeding, CEO and co-founder of Shopkick. Users will earn points for simply walking into a partner store and meeting the set criteria.

Rumored to have paid $200 million, the acquisition of Shopkick will move the South Korean company into a better position within the massive US mobile commerce market. “The acquisition of Shopkick will create the key platform of SK planet’s U.S. mobile commerce business, and also expand our global market position,” said Jinwoo So, CEO of SKP. “Shopkick’s dominant leadership position in mobile shopping in the U.S. combined with our depth of business assets will allow us to build the best shopping products across the globe. Together, we will expand well beyond mobile, connecting online and offline shopping experiences in unprecedented ways.”

SK Planet is set to benefit through the additional data collected from Shopkick users. The company is currently processing roughly US $50 billion per year in e-commerce transactions and operates a cross-retailer rewards program which currently has 38 million subscribers in South Korea. Considering the population of South Korea is 50 million people, one would say 38 million consumers is a solid subscription base.

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