It has been five months since we reported on Thailand’s online restaurant review site and mobile app service Wongnai.com (translated literally as ‘Insider’) , and during our trip to Thailand, we had the chance to meet the CEO and co-founder, Yod Chinsupakul.
Based on the statistics he has provided, it seems that Wongnai.com has enjoyed significant growth over the past few months. In August 2012, their community had 200,000 registered users and it has since jumped up to 360,000 users, out of which one third are monthly active users. Chinsupakul also added that the number of community restaurant reviews stand between 50,000 to 60,000 and that in terms of restaurant reviews and listings, Wongnai.com has the best metrics compared to other competitors based in Thailand, which are mostly portals that also have other features such as travel and lifestyle in additon to the food features.
Wongnai.com has also recently partnered with Nostra Maps to populate Nostra’s restaurant listings in the Wongnai database. Prior to this partnership, Wongnai had only 25,000 restaurant listings and now that has more than tripled to 110,000.
Wongnai is tailored specifically for Thai locals, with the bulk of users in Bangkok and the next being Chiang Mai, the second largest city in Thailand, which explains the company’s upcoming plan to open a new office there.
Currently, the startup is working closely with AIS (a telecommunications company in Thailand) so that their next mobile app version can provide information on restaurant discounts. They will also be introducing a new check-in feature for users. Presently, Wongnai is available for free on the iOS and Android platforms. But it will soon be launching its apps on the Blackberry 10 and Windows 8 platform, hoping to be one of the first in the Thai market to launch apps on these new platforms.
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