Groupon’s CEO Andrew Mason may be out of a job after his firing following a dismal earnings report that saw the stock drop 25 percent, but at least he has a sense of humor about it.
“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,” the former CEO quipped in a memo to Groupon’s employees. “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.”
The company is currently searching for a replacement, and will have executive chairman Eric Lefkofsky and vice chairman Ted Leonsis fill in for the time being, Forbes reported.
A day prior to the dismissal, Groupon’s stock lost a quarter of its value after it released its fourth quarter 2012 earnings report. Though the company managed $638 million in revenue, up 30 percent from the year before, it failed to produce a profit, actually suffering a 1 cent per share loss rather than the 3 cent per share profit that had been expected.
Part of that loss was a result of its “take rate,” which was used to satisfy merchants with sluggish interest in Groupon’s daily deals, coupled with a holiday slowdown that was sharper than expected, Reuters reported.
The loss caused Groupon’s stock to fall 26 percent Wednesday to $4.43 in afterhours trading. The company has lost more than three-quarters of its value since its IPO debut at $20 per share in November of 2011.
Not that the company has failed completely. Its active customer count has reached 41 million, a 22 percent improvement. Active Deals in North America are up 300 percent. Mobile is a strong venue for the company, with half of its transactions made through mobile devices. Total Groupons sold are also up 21 percent year over year.
Yet the company still can’t stop bleeding money to manage a profit. It tried to remain upbeat, with COO Kal Raman stating on a conference call, “That is an enormous opportunity to organize Groupon’s operations to be both more efficient.”
Why not start with the chief executive officer?