Groupon’s restatement doesn’t add up

Chicago-based investment research firm Morningstar can’t make the numbers in Groupon’s restatement add up. In a research note it sent to clients, who are institutional investors, it wrote:


Why Groupon is poised for collapse

Groupon was forced to restate fourth quarter earnings, sending its stock down 6% in after-hours trading. This surprised me as much as my $2 investment in the Mega Millions jackpot not paying off.

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.

Daily deals inspiring repeat business, study finds

Daily deal providers such as Groupon and LivingSocial are often criticized for driving low-quality business to merchants, but these young companies may, in fact, be purveyors of loyal customers.


LivingSocial lost $558M in 2011

Amazon spent $175 million for a 31 percent stake in number two daily deals site LivingSocial, and in so doing bought us all the best look yet at the privately-held Groupon competitor’s financials.

“Groupon for good” launches a service for charitable group buys

Group buying services have grown explosively over the last few years. Groupon, LivingSocial, Yipit, Foursquare and even Google have jumped into the suddenly hot arena of offering consumers discounts on local merchants’ products and services.

Money Roll

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

Daily deals site LivingSocial has closed a monster $176 million round of financing, according to documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission today. VentureBeat has learned that the $176 million is the first tranche of  $400 million the company hopes to raise over the next weeks and months to finance continued operations and expansion.

LivingSocial set to raise almost $200M at $5B valuation

Daily deals site LivingSocial is close to raising nearly $200 million in venture financing, which will value the site at $5 billion, The New York Times has reported, citing unnamed sources close to the matter. Previous LivingSocial investors such as are expected to participate along with new investors, according to the Times.

Deal fatigue moves Amazon to unsubscribe users from its daily deals mailer

Amazon is automatically unsubscribing some users from its AmazonLocal daily deals mailing list. Deal fatigue, the idea that consumers are tiring of daily deal emails, has been one of the longstanding concerns with the daily deals space. Amazon’s move is another indicator that this is happening.

How Groupon’s accounting changes hide what’s really going on at the company

I have long criticized Groupon’s accounting practices. As someone who has watched the company closely since the it first filed the paperwork to go public (now scheduled for November 4), I have seen how it has continually adjusted its S-1, often in response to withering criticism.

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.

BuyWithMe Choking

Deals site BuyWithMe chokes on acquisitions, announces huge layoffs

Daily Deals site BuyWithMe, which gorged itself buying smaller rivals, has laid off more than half its workforce, the company’s chief executive officer Jim Crowley announced yesterday. BuyWithMe was the No. 3 daily deals site in the U.S. behind Groupon and Living Social.

When Groupons are bad for small businesses

“Sorry we ripped you off. Your best bet is to go to Groupon and get your money back. We’re too chicken shit to answer the phone, so you got this message anyway. Sorry for your problems. Better luck next time.”