Typically, when CEOs are ousted from the businesses they founded, they go “spend more time” with their families, take up a hobby like yachting or move immediately on to the next company they can try not to drive into the ground. Not so for former Groupon CEO Andrew Mason, who was fired earlier this year. Though he’s going to join Y Combinator as an advisor, Mr. Mason has another trick up his sleeve: dropping an album, of course.
Quinn Norton speaks out on what life inside the Aaron Swartz investigation was like. “This will not be the final word on Aaron’s story, nor is it intended to be. Two years later, these are the events as I remember them, and the feelings as I knew them.” [The Atlantic]
Former dotcom millionaire Jennifer Sultan plead guilty to selling prescription drugs and conspiring to sell a firearm in exchange for four years in prison on Friday. Ms. Sultan, who sold her company Live Online during the first boom, burned through her fortune after becoming addicted to prescription pain killers. Let this be a cautionary tale for bubble 2.0. [New York Times]
Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz took to Rap Genius this weekend to decode Andrew Mason’s goodbye letter. Swag? [TechCrunch]
If you got an email this weekend from Evernote that it had reset your password, that’s because the company suffered a major security breach. [The Verge]
SpaceX Dragon has successfully docked at the International Space Station, which is great because we don’t really need any more griping from Elon Musk right now. [Ars Technica]
“What’s just depressing to me is how—and it’s not just for us, let me generalize it—the moment a company goes public the conversation shifts from how they’re trying to change the world and the product they’re building to how they’re making money.” Andrew Mason probably wasn’t ready to be the CEO of a publicly traded company. [Fast Company]
Meanwhile, at TED: Vint Cerf is dreaming of a day when we can use the Internet to communicate with aliens. Dude must make it a point to believe six impossible things before breakfast. [Gizmodo]
Former Gilt CEO Susan Lyne is now Brand Group CEO at AOL. Resident enfant terrible Alexia Tsotsis published the memo and added, ”As far as we can tell, Arianna, with her Hellenic iron fist, has retained her dominion over the HuffPost stronghold, and we’ll continue to push the boundaries of what we can do until we get fired.” Noted! [TechCrunch]
In other shuffles, Federated Media founder John Battelle is once more CEO of the blog network that he founded, taking over for Deanna Brown, who is leaving for an unspecified new project. [Forbes]
Apple Fellow Guy Kawasaki is now advising Motorola. [Android Authority]
IP Uh Oh
Rumors of Andrew Mason’s imminent demise as Groupon CEO started swirling back in November, but the bubble officially burst today following Groupon’s “disastrous” financial report.
Yesterday, in response to question about how the numbers would affect Mr. Mason, Groupon spokesperson Paul Taaffee told Bloomberg, “He’s here today.” He was speaking literally.
Groupon just announced that Mr. Mason is being replaced. The company has named a “newly created Office of the Chief Executive,” led by executive chairman Eric Lefkofsky and vice chairman Ted Leonsis, who will “serve in this role on an interim basis.”
And it seemed like British politicians had let the internet off the hook in crafting proposed regulations to reign in the unruly U.K. press. Not so fast. Policy directors from Google and Facebook have been summoned to appear before Parliament next week. [Tech Crunch]
Twice yearly, Google releases data on government requests to remove Read More
Bet you thought the next big story in the ailing daily deals business was going to be Andrew Mason’s ouster. And yet, it’s a competitor making headlines: Bloomberg News reports that LivingSocial has laid off 400 of its 4,500 employees. That’s about 9 percent of its staff, for those keeping score at home.
What’s a young CEO to do amid rumors that he may soon be relieved of his duties? Hunker down and lobby privately for an extended tenure? Or sit for a public interview on the subject of his imminent demise?
That was the question from Groupon CEO Andrew Mason faced this week, as gossip swirled Read More
Late last night, Twitter tongues wagged as to whether Groupon’s goofy CEO Andrew Mason would actually show up for his scheduled appearance at Business Insider’s Ignition conference in New York, especially after his name disappeared from the agenda.
“He has been off most relevant agendas for quite some time. The exception, of course, is the SEC watch list,” Interview Circuit founder Jon Sterling quipped, referencing the beleaguered company’s repeated run-ins with the commission (most recently over revenue details from its new business lines and questions about the daily deal site’s financial revision this spring.)
We haven’t heard too much from Groupon CEO Andrew Mason lately. (One gets the impression he felt the need to lie low for a little while.) But it seems he’s decided to reemerge into the public eye with a Businessweek profile wherein he puts on his absolute most serious, most adult, most professional game face.
Well, considering the company’s plunging stock price, it’s probably about time for a charm offensive.
For one thing, the man dressed up:
Well, well, will you look at that: Long-suffering Groupon finally had a good day. Q1 results are in, and the AP reports that revenues are up and losses slimming. Of course, after that mortifying Q4 earnings revision, the company badly needed things to go well. Maybe they’re getting better at being a public company, after all.
Revenues were up 89 percent year-over-year, from $295.5 million to $559.3 million. That number also beat expectations: Groupon had forecast somewhere between $510 million and $550 million, whereas analysts averaged out at $530.5 million. The company was also losing less money: Just $11.7 million this quarter, as opposed to $146.5 million in Q1 of 2011. There’s something to be said for moving in the right direction, at least.