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Which Group-Buying Website Will Come Out On Top?

By / 12.06.10

Last week Google offered to buy Groupon for the sextuply cool amount of six billion dollars.  $5.3 billion would be distributed up front, with an additional $700 million available later as an earnout. It seems high, but Groupon is expected to make $2 billion in revenue this year, only their second year in operation, despite the widely reported previous estimate that they would only make $500 million.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting Groupon turned down the deal, wanting to remain independent and eventually (as we speculated a couple weeks ago) make an initial public offering of stock.  If the deal had gone through, it would have been Google’s largest acquisition, their largest so far being the $3.1 billion they paid for DoubleClick in 2007.

Back in April, when Groupon was valued at only $1.3 billion, they sold $135 million in stock to Russian holding company Digital Sky Technologies (DST). At the time, Groupon CEO Andrew Mason stated, “When people came with a lot of money to buy a very small percentage of Groupon and it was enough to permanently solve the money problem, why would I not want to do that? Now I can focus on making Groupon great.”  So Groupon can afford to turn down an offer from Google while they focus on building a legacy, easier to do when you’re entirely your own boss.  We can understand, but daaaamn.  Six billion dollars was left on the table.  Cajones, they have them.

[news-links]

  • Google offered Groupon $5.3 billion with a $700 million earnout. (AllThingsD)
  • Groupon expected to make $2 billion in revenue this year, four times higher than previously reported. (AllThingsD)
  • Groupon turns down Google’s six billion dollars, shocks poor people everywhere. (WSJ)
  • Groupon “permanently solved the money problem” back in April of this year. We should all be so lucky. (Forbes via @lazerow)
  • Picture via GrouponForGroupon.

[/news-links]

[news-morenews]

  • It took three hours to clean up 52 pallets of Jell-O and pudding cups after a semi carrying them tipped over in Iowa.  Clean up crews found it easy to move salvageable Jell-O packs onto alternate transportation, as there’s always room for Jell-O. (GlobeGazette, picture via Flickr)
  • A man in Brighton, England realized people kept slipping on the patch of ice outside his house. Instead of warning people, he did the next best thing: set up a video camera. (via Newslite, video at Australia’s MSN, which is way cooler than our MSN)
  • Google isn’t the only one looking to get into the group-buying website game. Amazon has invested $175 million into LivingSocial, which is valued at $1 billion and is Groupon’s biggest competitor. LivingSocial currently pulls in more than $1 million each day on average and expects to post revenues of half a billion dollars in 2011.  That’s halfway cool. (TechCrunch)

[/news-morenews]

[news-stats]

  • 8% of all group-buying website visits in the U.S. are going to LivingSocial.  It’s in second place after Groupon, who still command 79% of the U.S. group-buying visits.  Third place went to BuyWithMe.com, who get just over 1% of the visits.  Uproxx’s own group-buying site — GetYourCatHatsHere.com — didn’t make a showing, which is a shame, because every cat should have a hat. (Mashable)
  • Not only do Groupon have ten times the traffic of their nearest competitor, but they are also the fastest-growing company in Web history. Well, fine, whatever. We didn’t need to sell these cases of cat hats anyway. (Forbes)

[/news-stats]


TOPICS#AMAZON#GOOGLE
TAGSENGLANDGROUPONIOWAJELL-OLIVINGSOCIAL

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