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Amazon steps over Groupon's festering corpse to set up UK deals souk

Shopping giant can't wait to tout tat vouchers

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Amazon has launched its daily deals bazaar in the UK, moving into a market that seems already oversubscribed with the likes of Groupon.

AmazonLocal, a typical coupon site, will have offers on things and stuff to do albeit initially for Londoners only. Prospective customers can book and pay for products and services with the details stored in their Amazon accounts.

The online souk has been operating in 32 states in the US for about a year.

Amazon also owns a stake in another daily deals site, LivingSocial, which it nabbed for $175m back in 2010. There's some crossover between LivingSocial and AmazonLocal deals in the States and the same could happen in Britain.

Daily deals sites have not had the easiest time lately: Groupon in particular looked a little shaky after a mini-exodus of execs. The initial rocketing growth of the voucher business has been replaced by uncertainty and slowing revenues.

But as an add-on to Amazon in general, AmazonLocal could fare better. It's quick to use if you have an Amazon account and live in the capital, and the etailer is also giving its MasterCard-armed customers loyalty points for their AmazonLocal purchases that can be collected and turned into gift certificates for Amazon itself. ®

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