Update: Groupon board considering Google acquisition offer

Update: Groupon board considering Google acquisition offer

Summary: The Wall Street Journal is quoting unnamed sources with Groupon who called Google's purchase offer "a big number."


The blogosphere and virtually every business- and tech-related news outlet spent most of Tuesday writing, tweeting, and otherwise speculating about just how big Google's offer for Groupon really was. Never mind that neither company had confirmed the existence of the offer. That small detail aside, the Wall Street Journal reported late Tuesday that Groupon's board was, in fact, meeting Wednesday to consider Google's offer.

That offer, pegged throughout the day at anywhere from $2.5 billion to over $6 billion, was, according to the Journal's unnamed sources, "a big number." A good many startups wouldn't need to consider a purchase offer upwards of $6 billion for too long, but in a testament to the power of Groupon's brand, product, and market positioning, there is apparently considerable debate on the board over the company's options.

Again, according to the Journal's sources,

Ahead of the call, "there's a lot of debate going on" among the various directors, this person added. The start-up is also considering other options, including pursuing an initial public offering, this person said.

The sort of targeted, social, local buying engine into which Groupon is evolving is quickly becoming at least one of a few holy grails of Internet tech and business. Will Google have the opportunity to leverage Groupon's existing community of 12 million users (and their credit card data and buying history) and the obvious business acumen of its staff? It remains to be seen whether Groupon's board and/or federal regulators will stand in the way.

Or, for that matter, if this isn't all just Google rumor-mongering. The latter is pretty unlikely, though. Given Google's acquisition history this year (and the rumor storm that preceded each one), it's most likely going to be a very interesting day for Groupon execs tomorrow.

Topics: Legal, Banking, Browser, CXO, Enterprise Software, Google

Christopher Dawson

About Christopher Dawson

Chris Dawson is a freelance writer, consultant, and policy advocate with 20 years of experience in education, technology, and the intersection of the two.

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  • RE: Update: Groupon board considering Google acquisition offer

    Please explain me why does groupon worth this much?
    • RE: Update: Groupon board considering Google acquisition offer

      @rajaan Because they seem to have discovered the secret sauce of local advertising, search, and commerce. They drive local users to nearby restaurants and retailers and make big money by taking a cut of the profits when consumers use the coupons they offer for those local retailers.

      It doesn't hurt that Oprah Winfrey likes them, too - they're both Chicago-based.
      • And they just rejected Google's offer

        instead deciding they may go public, on their own.
        Tim Cook