Groupon’s new Scheduler feature has potential, but two very big IFs

Groupon today launched a wide beta of its Groupon Scheduler product. The Scheduler is an online calendaring tool that allows service businesses such as spas, yoga studios, contractors and photographers to take reservations online. It’s open to all merchants, not just companies that run deals with Groupon. The daily deals company is billing it as a “free trial,” and it’s unclear whether Groupon will eventually charge for the service. Groupon did not respond to two requests for comment on this story.

Groupon’s whale problem

I’ve long suspected that Groupon has a whale problem — that a lot of its revenue comes from a small number of customers. New research from ForeSee indicates that this may be the case.

LivingSocial closes $176 million round. How far off is an IPO?

We reported in mid-November that the company was looking to raise $200 million at a $5 billion valuation. Investment bank JP Morgan, Lightspeed Ventures and Amazon.com all participated in the current round. One year ago this week, Amazon invested $175 million in LivingSocial. The daily-deals site has raised a total of $808 million in private funding and has spent $353 million to buy companies such as SocialMedia.com, TicketMonster and Urban Escapes. The current investment values the company at $6 billion.

Wayfair CEO talks Groupon IPO and the e-commerce deals industry

[vimeo 32313217 w=640 h=360] Wayfair.com recently surpassed Crate and Barrel to be the number two home goods website, is expecting $500 million in revenue this year, and closed a $165 million round of funding. We sat down with Niraj Shah, co-founder and chief executive officer of the e-commerce deals site, to get his thoughts on the Groupon IPO and the current e-commerce landscape.

Redeem&Get pulls in $200K to manage daily deals

Suffering from Daily Deal fatigue? Dublin startup Redeem&Get aims to make the process of redeeming a deal smoother for customers and more profitable for merchants. The company just won the Spark of Genius competition at the Dublin Web Summit, with prizes that included 40,000 EUR ($56,000) in cash and a 100,000 EUR ($141,000) termsheet from ACT Venture Capital.

Who gets hurt if Groupon collapses

Daily deals site Groupon is launching its IPO roadshow this week and is seeking a $10 billion valuation for the company, less than half of what was rumored when the company first filed to go public in June. That’s a big haircut.