All Articles Tagged "Groupon"
Groupon has announced that fired its CEO, Andrew Mason, a day after reporting fourth quarter results that sent the stock down 25 percent.
The 32-year-old Mason followed up his dismissal with a public message announcing he’d been canned.
After four and a half intense and wonderful years as CEO of Groupon, I’ve decided that I’d like to spend more time with my family. Just kidding – I was fired today. If you’re wondering why… you haven’t been paying attention. From controversial metrics in our S1 to our material weakness to two quarters of missing our own expectations and a stock price that’s hovering around one quarter of our listing price, the events of the last year and a half speak for themselves. As CEO, I am accountable.
Wow. He went on to say that a new leader will give the company a chance at achieving what it should. The full letter is available on Mashable.
In response to his firing, the company’s stock price went up four percent after hours. According to The Wall Street Journal, the board made their feelings known on Wednesday, requesting that Mason be relieved of his duties. Executive Chairman Eric Lefkofsky and Vice Chairman Ted Leonsis will serve as interim CEOs. The stock price went as low at $4.53 before the announcement. It has been as high as $20.
Aside from anything that Mason did, the company fell victim to a wave of tech start-up IPOs that didn’t live up to the hype. “On Wednesday, Groupon said its net loss widened to $81.1 million as it recorded shrinking margins, declining cash flow and projected weaker-than-expected sales for the current quarter,” the Journal reports. The New York Times says that when Groupon went public, it was valued at $16.5 billion and was getting offers from Google. Today, it’s worth $2.97 billion. Ouch.
Still, the company has 10,000 workers across 48 countries, the Times says. So there are opportunities for change and growth under new leadership. The key will be hiring the right person. We’ve got tips for that.
It’s Too Cold To Do A Damn Thing: Ways To Avoid Anti-Social Winter Behavior And Have Fun Even When It’s Freezing Out
Like the song, “Let It Snow” mentions, “the weather outside is frightful.” And, while there hasn’t been much snow as of late, the air outside is still rather frigid. This chilly weather keeps some of us in our apartments, and a good number of us stay tucked away in our beds, even during waking hours. This lack of motivation to get up and do things keeps us from being productive, making it easy for us to be anti-social and keeping us from enjoying the many events and attractions that the world around us has to offer. So it’s time for us to strap on some boots, put on some layers, and put the anti-social and anti-active behavior to bed.
Incentives: Steering clear of friends is one thing when its cold outside, but steering clear of other important responsibilities like going to the gym is simply that much easier. And we all know that when you miss one trip to the gym, it’s easy to fall off the wagon. The key here is bating yourself out the house, and this can be done by making yourself small promises. If you go to the gym or go far to visit a good friend, then you should reward yourself with a micro-shopping spree or a treat from your favorite bakery or confectionery spot.
Search: Don’t settle for places to go. Do some Internet research and find somewhere you’d REALLY like to be –otherwise you will bail and stay home. Check to see who has upcoming performances at big venues or smaller concert halls, search Groupon or similar sites for deals on events, and find out where folks are going and hitch your wagon onto the most interesting plans for the evening. Try to make a game out of seeing how many fun places you find to enjoy.
Small Soiree or House Party: You’re sick of not seeing people because you don’t want to leave your house? Natural solution: invite people over. It’s simple nowadays, you just send out a quick Facebook message or a text, and you can plan an evening in with friends. It must be kept in mind, however, there are a few downfalls to having people in your home, mainly that as the host you’re normally the one footing the bill for food and libations and cleaning things up. But well-planned potlucks and BYOB invitations are always a good idea as well. And if you want to avoid too much noise or mess, simple movie nights with a bowl of popcorn, some other small snacks and wine will do too.
Loiter: There are plenty of warm, interesting public places where you can visit for free and hang around for hours while being entertained or mentally stimulated. These places include, but are not limited to art galleries, museums, libraries, coffee shops (take a friend and catch up!) and more. In fact, you can often find free classes, free attractions, free club nights, free museums and free festivals that are available to all, especially if you’re living in a big city like New York.
Saving Money But Losing Weight: How A Few Groupon Coupons Helped Me Get Off The Couch And Get Healthy
I used to be all about the gym, fitness, healthy eating and all that comes with it. I have a closet full of workout gear and a cupboard full of water containers to prove it. I had a personal trainer who I would curse at weekly while she whittled me into fit and toned fabulosity.
Then, life happened.
I had to have surgery. Then there was the eight weeks of recovery, and getting back into the swing of things and back to work. Soon, the gym would be just a place I would donate money to and pass on my daily travels. Finding my way back to the gym (as in, back inside and not looking in from the outside) became harder and harder the longer I stayed away.
The truth is, I miss the fit and fabulous me. I miss having boundless energy and the constant desire to work out. I miss my trainer and our pretend love-hate relationship (I truly appreciated her). I even miss those 10 flights of stairs she made me run almost every week.
Realizing it was time for something new, I asked around for recommendations of gyms in my area and fitness classes that would be affordable. I got a lot of recommendations from friends, but then I realized there was an option I had been overlooking all this time. Groupon, the online shopaholic’s paradise, not only had great deals for clothes, jewelry, food and trips, but gym membership and fitness classes, too. My brain was pre-wired to look for restaurant Groupons, so I naturally overlooked any that could help me work off the food I was stuffing in my face thanks to their deals.
On a recent visit to Groupon.com, I found a sweet deal on a kickboxing class one of my girlfriends had told me about. The gym was offering a 10-class package for less than half the price of one month’s membership. I clicked the ‘buy’ button with the quickness on that one.
Then I found a deal on a trial membership to one of the hottest (literally) yoga studios in the area. I had heard a lot about Bikram yoga, and wanted to try it. However, I wasn’t about to fork out a full membership fee for something new that I didn’t know if I would like. The trial package was perfect; it offered just enough classes to see if I’d like it, and it was within my budget. Click! Sold!
There was a dirt-cheap Groupon for a freestyle fitness class I had heard about. For about the price of a fast food value meal, I could get 10 one-hour freestyle fitness/dance classes at one of the premiere studios in the area. Reviews I read about the class were overwhelmingly positive. It wasn’t Zumba, but it sounded just as fun. Click!
I’m just starting to use my fitness Groupons now, but I’ve mapped out a plan to use them all over the next three months and I’m excited about finally getting back in the gym, losing the pounds and living healthy once again. While I’m starting to feel a little lighter, at least my wallet isn’t. This isn’t in any way an advertisement for Groupon because Lord knows they’re not paying me for my shared opinions, but I’m grateful for the types of classes I’ve been exposed to thanks to the classes they offer. Without a Groupon, you would never find me in Bikram yoga. Without the deals I’ve found, I would barely be motivated to try kickboxing, but the deals have helped me to get enthusiastic about staying fit once again. The variety of the classes I have to choose from will keep things interesting, no doubt, and I’m looking forward to getting reacquainted with the fit and fab me. It’s only a matter of time.
Design house Jil Sander has sent a new handbag this season. And it’s a brown paper bag priced at $290. For men and women, because that sort of thing is unisex. True, the bag is “crafted from coated paper,” has “stitched seams” and “metal eyelets.” And, of course, the Vasari, as it’s known, has the words “Jil Sander” written on it. But it’s still, basically, a paper bag that costs $290.
There’s also a leather version of the bag for $360. The Jil Sander website says the bag is sold out. And you thought those LeBron X sneakers were pricey!
Here are some other things you can buy for $300 or less, just for fun.
-Today’s Groupon Getaway deal to St. Croix: $229 for three nights at the Hibscus Beach Resort.
-Three tickets to see Cirque du Soleil in Atlantic City on eBay.
-This made-to-order desk made from “reclaimed wood” on Etsy.
-The prix-fixe vegetable tasting at Per Se restaurant in New York’s Columbus Circle. Your meal will include sweet corn sorbet; an olive, artichoke and parsley omelette; and fancy cheese and crackers. If there’s something you don’t finish, you can take it home in your designer brown sack.
More on Madame Noire Business!
- Microloans Providing an Alternative Resource for Small Businesses
- Karen Duckett Built Her Architecture Firm, Duckett Design Group, One Brick At A Time
- Why Does Hampton University Dread Locs? Business School Bans Cornrows and Dread Locs for Male Students
- Brandy, Pick It Up: Old Content Strategies Don’t Cut It Anymore
- How to Start a Business In… Newark, N.J.
- Here are the Five Highest Paying Jobs You Don’t Need a Bachelor’s Degree to Do
The season of beaches, BBQs and outdoor festivals is quickly coming to an end, but it’s not completely over yet! Take advantage of the last unofficial weekend of the summer season — Labor Day weekend — and pack lightly (or not at all!) for these last-minute, affordable ideas for ending the summer on the right note!
Deals online through various getaway websites like Groupon, LivingSocial, Last Minute Travel or Expedia can make your last summer weekend your best weekend of the season. With many deals in various destinations, going online to book a last-minute trip has become one of the most popular ways, with up to 80 percent off regular hotel prices.
Tip: Make sure you read the fine print of your online deal to make sure the Labor Day holiday weekend is covered with the number of nights you need. Book your travel, pack your bags and you’re all set to soak up the last summer weekend.
Meet Tia Williams, former beauty editor (Elle, Glamour, Lucky, Teen People, Essence), best selling best-selling author (It Chicks, The Color Of Beauty) and 1/3 of the team behind The Fly Cut, an innovate weekly deal website selling discounted vouchers to hair salons specializing in African-American and ethnic hair. Yes, you heard correctly: discounts to get your hair did. Together with her sisters Devon and Laura Williams, the trio has been working overtime to launch the website, which will not only make it possible for consumers to experience 5-star salon services at some of the most sought-after Black and ethnic hair salons without paying full price, but also offer members of The Fly Cut exclusive information about their favorite salon as well as tips on finding a salon fitting for his/or her specific hair needs.
CB: So The Fly Cut is like Groupon meets The Daily Candy but with an emphasis on ethnic hair salons. It’s brilliant yet I am surprised that no one else has thought of this before? What inspired the concept behind The Fly Cut, particularly the name and why the focus on African American and ethnic hair salons?
Tia Williams: My sisters and I always talked about working together, and The Fly Cut seemed like the perfect business at the perfect time! The economy sucks, no one has any money, but black and brown women need for their hair to look fierce. As a beauty editor, I have access to some of the top hair salons in the country — so we thought, why not share it with the masses by offering major discounts on top salon services? Gorgeous hair at affordable prices! The Groupons and Living Socials aren’t targeting black women and their hair, exclusively. It seemed like a no-brainer. “The Fly Cut” refers to both a fabulous haircut and a “cut” or a discounted service.
CB: This is basically a family-owned business, founded by you and your sisters Devon and Lauren Williams. What roles has each sister played in establishing The Fly Cut and share with us how the experience has been of building a business and a brand with family?
Part of what makes this venture so exciting is that we each bring something unique to the table. I’ve been a beauty editor for 15 years, so I know the hair industry inside and out. Devon’s a corporate and entertainment lawyer, so she’s the legal genius of the operation. And Lauren’s the deputy editor at TheRoot.com, and knows the online space like the back of her hand. It’s kind of a dream team moment!
Groupon has been saving consumers tons of dollars on their favorite activities and bringing unknown businesses new clientele for a little over a year now with its daily web deals. The idea has spawned a number of spinoff websites, and one site in particular, blackmark-it.com, is dedicated specifically to black-owned businesses.
Christopher Nolen, an independent film director and producer calls the site the African American Community’s Groupon. “It’s a great way to give African-American business owners some notoriety and help them in this economy, says Nolen who immediately signed up for the site when he came across it.
“As a business owner and filmmaker, it’s incredible when I see other African-Americans helping each other in business. We need more of that.”
Officially launched today, the first deal featured on the site is a discount for 40 percent off tax-preparation services by Emerging Business Solutions Group, LLC in Chicago. This deal will run for one week, as will the next three, then after the first month, the website’s creators plan to offer two deals per week and gradually increase to daily deals.
“We’re setting maximums (of deals) as low as 25 to 50 to make sure the merchants can meet the demand, and then we can revisit growth strategies,” says Natasha Williams, a marketing consultant at The Nielsen Company. She started the site with her husband Jamel, a truck driver who also manages their catering business, Covenant Café. “For many minority-owned businesses, advertising feels like more risk than a gain,” she says.
To help black business owners balance that risk, blackmark-it will only take 20-40 percent of the revenue from each deal, depending on the deal’s amount, the quantity sold, and other factors. In comparison, most daily deal sites take half of the cut. More than offering discounts on beauty services at nail salons and spas, or savings on meals at restaurants, the site also offers deals on professional photography services as well as books by up-and-coming authors.
Right now, the deals are mostly available in Chicago due to its high number of black-owned businesses but the couple plans to extend to other cities. This could be a great tool for minority businesses trying to get off the ground.
Do you support black-owned businesses? Would you check out blackmark-it.com?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
More on Madame Noire!
- We Are Family! Shocking Celebrity Relatives!
- Break Up To Make Up: Couples Who Just Couldn’t Let Go…
- 10 Artists That Blew Up…But Shouldn’t Have
- From Script to Song: Actors Who Can Actually Sing…
- Vitamin B(eautiful): Nutrients To Help You Stay Healthy and Gorgeous
- Switched At Birth: Celebrities Who Were Adopted
(San Jose Mercury News) – Online daily-deals originator Groupon was prepared Friday morning to debut as a public company, offering stock that would value the Chicago company at a total seen only once before in history for a technology company’s initial public offering.
Groupon filed Thursday to sell 35 million shares — about 5.5 percent of the company, a smaller percentage than is normally offered — at $20 apiece. That would set the company’s market value at $12.7 billion, the second-highest total in tech history to Mountain View Internet giant Google (GOOG), which had a valuation of $23.1 billion when it went public in 2004.
Even though Groupon was one of the sole pioneers when it came to providing a way for companies to provide discounts over the Internet, even when others jumped on the discount bandwagon – Groupon’s brand seemed to remain intact.
So, it wasn’t that much of a shock in early June when Groupon announced their decision to go forward with a highly anticipated initial public offering (IPO) that would be finalized in late September. Unfortunately, for the discount brand – that wasn’t to be the case. Especially, since the company recently released a statement saying that they were postponing the IPO due to the market downturn and concerns brought forth by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
While some companies such as LinkedIn and Zillow have had shaky IPO starts, others like the music company Pandora have had it relatively easy – leaving some to wonder – is Groupon’s hesitation a sign of a bigger issue?
After all, the company’s missteps have been well known and documented since the awkward-bordering-on-insensitive advertisement that was broadcasted during the Superbowl. Outside of that, the company has also come under fire for its unusual accounting metric, the Adjusted Consolidated Segment Operating Income, which is seen as an unfair to measure their financial worth. Which, the SEC asked them promptly to remove prior to the company submitting their IPO application.
On top of that, the high marketing costs coupled with their unprofitable business model have potential investors raising their eyebrows. Although, some view Groupon’s business model as unreliable – it didn’t help that soon after, a memo penned by CEO Andrew Mason for his employees was “leaked” to the masses, which many saw as a violation of the SEC’s silent period mandate.
Surprisingly, it still wasn’t the first time Groupon had come close to breaking the quiet period rules. Especially, since the day after the company filed for the IPO, Groupon’s chairman and one of its biggest investors, Eric Lefkofsky, told Bloomberg that the daily-deal company was going t be “wildly profitable,” once the company officially went public.
Although, Groupon has yet to come out defending their case and with no apparent signs of road show on the horizon – it is hard to estimate how long it will be before the public hears Groupon’s take on the situation. In the meantime, it hasn’t been determined what effects this will have (if any) on investors when Groupon decides to eventually move forward with its IPO process. Either way, they are slowly emerging as a poster child for burgeoning entrepreneurs by showcasing the best way not to go public.
Cynthia Wright is an avid lover of all things geeky. When she isn’t freelancing, she can be found on her blog BGA Life and on Twitter at @cynisright.
(Creators.com) — “Social media” is the buzzword of the moment in online commerce, thanks largely to the success of “The Social Network,” a movie about Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Just about every e-commerce website is looking to add a “social media” element and to find new ways to harness “the power of the collective” to create new business models. One recent ripple in the “social media’ stream are online coupon promotion websites, the most popular of which are Groupon.com and LivingSocial.com.
There are subtle differences between the Web sites, but most work like this:
— You, a merchant with stuff to sell, contact the site and offer a special deal to your customers — an “exclusive” deal not available anywhere else — usually at a steep discount (50 percent to 90 percent off list price is not uncommon).
— The site posts your “deal,” with a specific end date (similar to an eBay listing), and people sign up for it.