The inevitable happened, eventually! Andrew Mason, founder of Groupon, has been shown the door, apparently because of the bad financial performance of the company over the several quarters. Andrew Mason founded the daily deals company in 2008 and it became a public company through IPO in 2011.
The ouster of Mason comes a day after Groupon reported net losses of $81.1 million for the fourth quarter and $67.4 million for all of 2012, even as revenue rose 29.7% in the quarter to $638.3 million from $492.2 million a year earlier.
In Mason’s place, executive chairman Eric Lefkofsky and vice chairman Ted Leonsis have been appointed to a newly created office of the chief executive, effective immediately, the company said. The company’s board has already begun a search for a new CEO.
Groupon is entering the mobile payments space with its own offering, Groupon Payments. The service, which facilitates credit card transactions, is available to any small business in the U.S.; however, it’s offered to Groupon merchants at cheaper rates.
Groupon is positioning the service as easier and less expensive for small businesses to use than traditional payment systems. It is built into the latest version of the Groupon Merchants app for the iPhone and iPod touch.
In addition to lower transactions fees, Groupon also promises to pay its users overnight instead of waiting the standard two or three days for a credit card payment.
Swiped transactions for MasterCard, Visa and Discover are 1.8 percent plus15 US cents per transaction. For American Express, the fee is 3 percent plus 15 cents per transaction. Read more
The quarterly report for Groupon was quite eye opening. In many ways, there was much in the report that should have been a given, however considering the negative surprises in between, most had little to no respect for the revenue numbers that came from management beforehand. Now Groupon plans to take this ecommerce game to the next level and insert itself as the operating system of local commerce, at least according to the firm’s CEO, Andrew Mason.
The daily dealing gorilla is making some serious attempts to reassure investors of its long-term viability. According to Paymenteye.com in a letter to investors, “Mason claims that the internet is yet to revolutionize local commerce as it has done for markets such as media and entertainment, and he remains bullish about Groupon’s prospects in the coming months despite conceding that its first six since its $700 million IPO were “rocky to say the least”. Mason says that Groupon is developing a platform for local commerce as it attempts to tap into what he describes as a “multi-trillion dollar ecosystem”, hinting that the company is set to move beyond simply offering daily deals to consumers.” Read more
Group deals company Groupon has acquired e-commerce data firm Adku for an undisclosed price, the startup announced today.
Adku provides a service that attempts to “optimize” a person’s shopping experience by providing product suggestions on sites like Zappos, eBay, and Amazon. It does this by using various data about each shopper such as location and hot news trends.
The startup was founded by three former Google engineers and has remained in stealth-mode since it launched at theAngelPad Demo event in 2010. It’s unknown exactly how Groupon will use Adku’s technology or what the startup’s six employees will be working on. Groupon, which has been accused of being weak on the technology side, will benefit from Adku if only for their product. Read more
Rocket Internet, the key promoters of Groupon, has announced that they will launch an ecommerce website next month, which will focus on promote retailing of a wide range of fashion & lifestyle products.
The new business will be headed by three entrepreneurs Arun Chandra Mohan, Praveen Sinha and Lakshmi Potluri.
Internet sales are increasing rapidly as consumers take advantage of lower prices and discounts offered by wholesalers retailing their products. This trend is set to strengthen as websites address consumer security and privacy concerns. Read more
Finally, Groupon, the daily-deal website announced that it will go for Initial Public Offering (IPO) in November. IPO was on the radar of Groupon since they turned down Google’s $6 billion acquisition offer.
With IPO, Groupon is expecting to raise $621 million, valuing the company at $11.4 billion. This is slightly less, compared to their earlier expectation of $750 million and a $15 billion valuation. They plan to sell 5% of the shares through IPO for $15-$16 apiece and get listed on NASDAQ with the ticker ‘GRPN’.
Couple of months back, Groupon had put the IPO on hold due to its ‘not-so-good’ financials and market volatility. Now, even though the market is still volatile, the strong financials have given confidence to Groupon for going public.
Groupon, the ‘daily deals’ company, known for rejecting the $6 billion acquisition offer of Google, entered into ecommerce with their new initiative – Groupon Goods. The Chicago based company sent emails to some of their customers on Wednesday, offering discounts on products like Coffee Brewer, Hair dryer etc. Read more