Yelp recently announced that it had crossed 53 million global uniques and 20 million reviews. More interesting than that is the way it’s launching in Australia — through a deal with YP publisher Sensis. (Australia becomes Yelp’s 10th country.)
A couple of days ago Yelp put out a press release announcing the unique relationship:
Through the partnership Yelp will integrate Sensis’ Yellow Pages local business listing data into the site and leverage Sensis’ local sales force to launch and embed yelp.com.au into the Australian market. Sensis will syndicate Yelp content, ratings and reviews to yellowpages.com.au, Yellow Pages mobile and the Yellow Pages iPhone application.
Yelp will use Sensis’ listings data and the latter’s sales force will help sell ads into Yelp. Sensis will get all of Yelp’s reviews content. Sensis provides listings data for Google Maps in Australia as well.
While the deal is novel for Yelp it makes sense from several angles, including data acquisition and sales. However Yelp could have just used the Sensis API and not done the larger partnership as well.