The biggest prey of the exuberance surrounding daily deal offers closed for renovations. Yet, to the apparent surprise of those waiting to cash in their coupons, it has reopened under a different name.
Marlon's Meat is the new moniker of the midtown Toronto organic butcher shop — formerly known as The Butchers — that offered deep discounts through a slew of coupon companies last spring. The inability to meet the demands of 21,000 bargain hunters resulted in owner Marlon Pather trying to set aside specific evening hours for redemption — with police protection for staff.
Now, the renovated store is back on Twitter in the effort to placate the still-unsatisfied customers of services like Buytopia, Dealfind, Dealgetters, Dealticker, TeamSave and Webpiggy.
Of course, none of those can claim the $12.7 billion valuation recently bestowed upon the brand they were trying to emulate, Groupon — although they were eager to sweep its sawdust.
Despite all the skeptics about whether daily deals are a sustainable concept, the Butchers saga suggests that the market for these operations will quickly thin out, in favour of intermediaries trusted not to leave both businesses and customers in the lurch.