Report Puts Google’s Zagat Purchase At $151 Million

The purchase price of Google’s acquisition of restaurant review and guide source Zagat has been pinpointed at $151 million in cash, according to an SEC filing by the company itself and reported by Reuters.

Our original estimate, based on the fact that an FTC antitrust review had not been triggered by the deal, was under $66 million, and the Wall Street Journal later cited the inevitable “person familiar with the matter” with a $125 million figure. As it turns out, we both lowballed it by quite a bit.

The $151m figure is less than Zagat was hoping for a few years ago, but that valuation was perhaps self-evidently a bit high, as no one took the bait then. But it’s more money than Google has paid for 90% of the companies it has bought: Zagat will be in the top ten (albeit near the bottom) most expensive purchases they’ve made.

Google’s plans for the company haven’t been clearly delineated yet, but it’s fairly easy to see how the vast store of reviews and local data fits in with Google’s local business strategy. Until the company and its holdings have been sufficiently internalized, however, a process that will likely take months yet, the effect on Google’s services should be minimal.

The rest of the regulatory finding filed by Google presents a picture of a brisk takeover strategy: 54 deals have been closed up to September of 2011, totaling $502m. In 2010 they paid $676m for 37 companies, not including the nearly $1b it shelled out for On2, Slide, and AdMob.