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On January 2011, Groupon’s journey in Malaysia began.

According to a Facebook note by founder Joel Neoh, 60 months later, they had a platform connecting 10,000 local businesses to over 3 million people in Malaysia.

He left as Groupon Malaysia’s CEO to start his own company in 2015. KFit was born to connect consumers with gyms and fitness studios.

The new kid on the block was clearly Groupon-inspired, but not set up in direct competition to his former company—or so it seemed.

But now in a move that seems akin to regrets after losing an ex, after acquiring Groupon Indonesia, KFit has gone and acquired Groupon Malaysia.

What’s the deal with that?

The team tells us that this isn’t going back to the start—in fact, they’re determined to turn the Groupon model into one that both works and lasts. They’re also rebranding themselves as Fave, for this new era.

So what’s their plan moving forward?

1. Keep The Good, Then Make It Great

Making Groupon great again

In the age of Groupon: Once upon a time, Groupon was one of the top guns in the Malaysian industry. They were the pioneers of the deals and promos platform here.

Moving on to Fave:

Groupon’s strengths were in helping lesser known businesses attract new customers. On the consumer front, users got great deals and new experiences.

Fave are planning on keeping this aspect, but making it better so that customers not only try new places but keep going back.

Their improvements?

They want to make it a lot easier to discover, purchase and redeem using Fave, especially on mobile. Which brings us to the next point.

2. Mobile-First As The Winning Strategy

In the age of Groupon: It was built with the web platform in mind, and the app was secondary.

Moving on to Fave:

With the building blocks in the new Fave Group of KFit, Groupon (Malaysia and Indonesia) and Fave, they’re going at the market with a mobile-first focus.

Why mobile-first?

  • Users want it. The target market is large—over 65% of Malaysians currently own a smartphone and we are among the Top 10 nations in terms of smartphone penetration.
  • Like Groupon, Fave already uses in-app paperless redemptions. However, Groupon still had some deals requiring paper redemption; Fave is 100% mobile redemption and 100% paperless.
  • Fave’s operations are now fully locally built and independent of any regional technology headquarters. Innovations and growth can happen at a more rapid pace to suit the technological changes in the software development cycle.

3. It’s About Location, Location, Location

Nearby: Groupon versus Fave

In the age of Groupon: Deals were sorted in districts, and there was no distance filter. Users had to scroll through seemingly endless pages to find deals.

Moving on to Fave:

The current iteration of the Fave app is very location-centric. Among what it can do:

  • Show users how far away the deal is
  • Arrange offers according to its distance away from the user
  • Helps for planning and keeping things relevant for the user
  • Is a way for local businesses to attract nearby clientele

Unlike Groupon, the ‘Nearby’ tab is further broken down to Eat, Beauty, Activities, Services and Travel. After all, if you’re hungry, you don’t want to know what the gym downstairs has to offer you.

4. Embracing Cashless With FavePay

Mobile payments with FavePay

In the age of Groupon: Payments were made only via online banking or credit card. There was no awards or loyalty system.

Moving on to Fave:

Riding the fintech wave in Malaysia and of our neighbour Singapore, Fave is introducing FavePay, now in its beta phase.

Once it is fully launched:

  • Customers can pay for their meals instantly. No need to hunt for your wallet, find change or wait for the waiter.
  • At participating restaurants, users can key in the total of their purchase or bill into the Fave app, and click pay.

Malaysians currently have mixed feelings about the concept of cashless, but Fave will provide the option for users without coercion.

FavePay will also serve as a loyalty programme; using it gives additional discounts and cashbacks on every purchase that can be immediately claimed.

5. Taking A Customer-First Mentality

In the age of Groupon: Customers were important, but communication with them was mostly limited to phone calls, emails and Facebook messages.

Moving on to Fave:

No matter how powerful a team is, the cornerstone of a business begins and ends with the customer experience.

According to the team, “We operate with the belief that it all starts with the customer and then we work backwards from there. When you truly understand customers’ wants and needs, only then will you be able to truly create a great business.”

To that end, Fave will continue to add on to their growing pool of retailers, sourcing out the kind of deals based on what they observe are their customers’ interests.

But more than just behaviour observations, Fave offers in-app customer service chats directly to their ‘happiness’ team through their app under the Help Center, who can reply in 30 seconds or less. Another move by Fave that is mobile-first.

If you’re interested in trying Fave by Groupon for yourself, use this promo code VULCANFAVE that will give you 16% off first purchase, valid until the 14th of March 2017.

This article was brought to you by Fave.

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© 2021 GRVTY Media Pte. Ltd.
(UEN 201431998C.)

Vulcan Post aims to be the knowledge hub of Singapore and Malaysia.

© 2021 GRVTY Media Pte. Ltd.
(UEN 201431998C.)