Groupon Remains “Confident,” New Investors Reconsider Investing

Dear media: All those puns about Groupon "not being such a good deal anymore" are real clever. Please keep 'em coming!

Indeed, scanning the headlines this morning for this post, there's been a definite uptick in the amount of naysayers coming out to kick Andrew Mason's company when it's down, as if all these unfortunate developments are somehow a big shock. Of course it's worthwhile unpack what went wrong, but it's equally important to figure out where things go from here.

Yesterday I joked that now is the time to invest in Groupon, but there was a grain of truth to that joke if you have an iron stomach. Crain's is reporting on Tuesday that Groupon actually has a shot at courting new investors if it can right itself here. Clearly, it's a big risk, since Groupon's stock is whimpering its way closer to $10 ($13.54 as of press time), but it's actually giving large institutional investors who previously passed on the IPO paused and occasion to reconsider.

David Rudow, a senior analyst at Minneapolis-based mutual fund Thrivent Asset Management, which passed on Groupon's IPO told Crain's:

"We're going to relook at it… they're in the penalty box now… it usually takes a couple quarters of solid results to get out. So now's the time if you didn't own it, you do the work on it because it's out of favor. Now is the time the real investors will step in and look at it… the guys who are buying now will ask the tough questions.” 

Certainly, there's no shortage of tough questions to ask. The toughest of all? What will the answers be, if there are any?

According to Groupon CFO Jason Child -- who reportedly got a raise April 1 -- the company is "confident in the fundamentals of our business." Or at least, that's what he said on March 30 in an investor statement issued March 30. I don't know about you, but if you realized you had $14.3 million less than you said, is "confident" really the word you'd use? 

David Wolinsky is a freelance writer and a lifelong Chicagoan. In addition to currently serving as an interviewer-writer for Adult Swim, he's also a columnist for EGM. He was the Chicago city editor for The Onion A.V. Club where he provided in-depth daily coverage of this city's bustling arts/entertainment scene for half a decade. When not playing video games for work he's thinking of dashing out to Chicago Diner, Pizano's, or Yummy Yummy. His first career aspirations were to be a game-show host.

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