Just a couple of days ago, there was some confusion as to what happened with Indonesian travel site Gonla as it now only shows “503 service unavailable.” Is this the end for Gonla’s ventures?
Founder of Indonesian news portal Viva.co.id (which is under the same parent company as Gonla) Karaniya Dharmasaputra tells us that Gonla has indeed been shut down since August 31st. He says that the company is going through a major change as well as restructuring, and it will integrate Gonla with the news portal site Viva.
Karaniya adds that right now Viva is no longer a news site, but it has become a portal where community and commerce will play big roles in its development aside from news and information. He will share more about it when they launch the new version.
Gonla itself offered hotel booking service in Indonesia, particularly for Jakarta and Bali areas. The business mainly targets foreign tourists. The site has guts to offer a “best price guarantee,” which will refund any price difference if users can find a cheaper deal.
It will be interesting to see how Viva plans to compete with the other prominent news sites like Kompas, Detik, and Merdeka in the country. Do you think integrating news sites and e-commerce is a wise choice? Or should they stick to operating vertical sites for its e-commerce focus? Let’s see how the company’s strategy works out in the future.
(Editing by Paul Bischoff)