In a joint press conference yesterday, Sulit formally announced that it has acquired start-up company, Pinoy Auto Trader. The acquisition looks more like an acqui-hire considering that the new site is barely a year old in operation.
For a couple of years now, Sulit has been fiercely marketing their site in tri-media and tightly focused on several key verticals like “real estate” and “cars” (thus, a restructure of the site to create cars.sulit.com.ph as a landing portal).
It would look like Pinoy Auto Trader (PAT) was actually trying to get into the automotive market where Sulit already has a strong foothold. However, the execution done by PAT is more elegant and has a lot of rich content (it’s also a coincidence that the architects of PAT has strong SEO background which jives well with Sulit).
Sulit already captures a lot of traffic, and with ad money, they can even drive more traffic. PAT’s strengths is in design, rich content, architecture and a fresh approach at doing car classifieds. Combine both and you have a stronger portfolio. We still go by our initial theory that the acquisition was mostly driven to get all that raw talent from the PAT team.
Naspers, the investor and majority owner of Sulit.com.ph, has been shopping around for other sites and we’ve confirmed 2 years back that MIH was courting local car site Tsikot.com (see our story here) for a possible Php100 Million investment package (MIH is owned by Naspers; aggregates all media assets of Naspers).
With Tsikot out of the picture, Pinoy Auto Trader was in the right place and the right time. The entire PAT team is now housed at Sulit’s main office and will be getting more resources and manpower (they’re actually running Google Ads on this site).