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M&A activity for location-based apps hots up with 'leaked' Yahoo! deal for Foursquare

Time for check-ins apps to cash out?
M&A activity for location-based apps hots up with 'leaked' Yahoo! deal for Foursquare

Given the coverage of the location-based social apps focuses on their growing userbases, soaring check-in rates and deal after deal being signed with thirdparties, it's evident this is a sector on the rise.

The question of just how steep that ascent will be - and how anyone will make money out of people checking into real world locations - remains a pertinent one however.

A finger in many pies

On userbase size alone, Booyah's MyTown and Foursquare seem to be leading the way.

So prevalent in the media is the latter, in fact, that Business Insider recently suggested Yahoo! was considering lining up a $100 million bid for it.

The website claimed Yahoo!'s merger and acquisition deal-makers were engaged in discussions regarding whether to table an offer, the deal likely to propel what many perceive to be an archaic Yahoo! into the app era.

It would certainly enable some interesting business opportunities in terms of advertising.

By linking up with television networks, fashion empires and tapping into Microsoft's Bing Maps, Foursquare is fast gaining access to many different markets.

Raising the stakes

However, speculation also suggests the rumours might have been nothing more than a clever ruse by Foursquare to bump up its price.

The company is currently courting the interest of various venture capitalists, whose respective valuations are reportedly around the $80 million mark.

Current favourite is said to be Gideon Yu of Khosla Ventures, who has previously been a force behind the likes of Facebook and YouTube.

That would put Foursquare in some esteemed company, but with its userbase currently growing at a rate that out-paces Twitter's initial run, it seems the location-based app is well placed to live up to such a billing.

[source: VentureBeat]