Groupon chief executive axed, shares rise 12 per cent

Shareholders in global group buying site Groupon have seen their shares rise by 12 per cent in after-hours trading in New York after chief executive Andrew Mason left the company.

HumanIPO reported yesterday Groupon had posted a larger than expected fourth quarter loss, which saw its shares drop by 25 per cent on Wednesday night.

Within minutes of the sacking being confirmed, shares rose by 12 per cent, reaching a US$5.10 high.

In a memo to Groupon employess posted online, Mason said: “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.”

Despite the large overnight rise, US$5.10 is still relatively low compared to its November 2011 initial public offering of US$20 per share.

Speaking to HumanIPO yesterday Jess Green, founder of ubuntudeal.co.za and perk.co.za, said he believed much of Groupon’s problems lied in the fact their initial share prices were too high.

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