Who really wins if Rocket goes public?

Europe has been talking for weeks about the possibility that the Samwer brothers, Germany’s uber clonemeisters, may be taking some or all of their copycat empire public. Would it be a victory for Europe’s startups? Or confirmation that they lack imagination?

With Savored buy, Groupon moves further away from daily deals

Groupon has bought New York City-based discount reservation service Savored, which offers diners up to 40 percent off their meals in exchange for making a reservation at a specific time. The acquisition complements Groupon Now, but distances Groupon even more from its core daily deals product.

As daily deals decline, DealsGoRound relaunches as MyCabbage

With daily deals in retreat, it’s forcing companies that have built up to serve that market to evolve. DealsGoRound, a secondary market for deals, is now relaunching as MyCabbage, a broader service for saving not just deals but gift cards and coupons.

Groupon expands beyond deals with rewards program

In an attempt to move beyond being a provider of deals, Groupon is launching a loyalty program for U.S. consumers and merchants, part of a bigger effort to become the “operating system for local commerce.” Groupon Rewards gives merchants a way to track and recognize loyalty.

So what exactly is a tech company?

Alex Payne, formerly of Twitter and more recently of Simple, a banking service, asks the all-important question: What is and is not a technology company? He is right in asking this question, but shouldn’t we also be rethinking how to value some of these companies?

What if Facebook isn’t so special after all?

Facebook’s latest securities filing contains some eye-popping numbers but also some red flags — particularly a sharp rise in costs. As the company’s IPO approaches, investors need to ask themselves, Is Facebook unlike anything we have seen before, or is it just another modestly profitable Web business?

SEC may start Groupon investigation

A report in the Wall Street Journal suggests that the Securities & Exchange Commission is looking into the company’s recent actions. Groupon recently revised the its very first set of financial results. The reinstatement of revenues shows that Groupon is plagued by much deeper problems.

Did Groupon investors just get stuffed with a turkey?

How’s this for a happy Thanksgiving present? Groupon’s stock price sank Wednesday to the lowest point since its initial public offering earlier this month, closing at $16.96 a share, well below its $20 IPO share price — sparking pre-holiday buzz (and Schadenfreude) in tech and finance circles.

Yipit brings aggregated daily deals to iPhone

Daily deal aggregator Yipit is finally available on mobile with a new iPhone app. The app provides users with a mobile version of Yipit’s My Deals feature, which personalizes deal recommendations from its base of more than 800 providers and serves up the top offers.

At Qwiki, trouble over company’s future

Qwiki, the San Francisco-based search startup, may be going through a rough patch. Qwiki’s two top technical executives and at least one early engineer left abruptly last week, sources say, after major disagreements with the CEO over the company’s future product strategy.

Groupon trims back IPO plans, shows significant progress

Groupon is moving forward with a scaled back initial public offering and is showing some better progress toward profitability. The company said that it will sell 30 million shares at $16 to $18 million a share, which would raise up to $540 million.

Groupon’s New Fuzzy Math

Unorthodox accounting metrics are not new to Groupon. In the latest instance, the daily deal site says it isn’t happy that some “clever peop…

Google buys up German daily deal provider

Google, whose daily deal product Google Offers is off to a slow start, appears to be in this game for the long haul with another acquisition aimed at firming up its nascent business. Google has bought up DailyDeal, a German deals provider.

CityPockets capitalizes on daily deal frenzy

CityPockets, which organizes daily deals from about 30 sites including Groupon, Living Social and others, is now improving its mobile application to include not only a digital wallet but also a secondary market for daily deals that people can search for, buy and redeem instantly.

SEC Eyes Groupon Accounting Metrics: Report

When Groupon filed IPO documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission in June, its use of certain financial accounting metrics raised…

Is Twitter helping to inflate the tech bubble?

Twitter is reportedly raising a huge new round of financing that could value the company at more than $7 billion. The company is clearly taking advantage of a red-hot market for tech stocks — but can it build a business that justifies that kind of lofty valuation?

Descuento Libre wants to be Groupon for Latinos

Descuento Libre is a daily deal site catering to Latinos in the United States. While Groupon emphasis new adventures, this year-old site is staking a claim with family-friendly activities and household goods and services and a different model for attracting businesses.

Pandora rides wave of enthusiasm for tech IPOs

Pandora has boosted the price it plans to charge for its stock, a move that likely has a lot to do with the frenzy of interest in tech issues following the Groupon IPO — but will that rising tide of enthusiasm lift all boats, or swamp them?

Groupon Founders’ Master Plan: Build More Groupons

With an IPO in the cards, two of Groupon’s co-founders are already cashing in on its success. Now they plan to use their money to build a generation of companies that can mimic Groupon’s tactic of using people — not technology — to grow.

Can Sprout Social Win the Social Media Monitoring War?

As more businesses switch on to the possibilities of social media, a battle is brewing between the tools that help them do it best. Faced with stiff competition, Chicago-based Sprout Social has a simple strategy: fight back by building great products.

Here’s How Facebook Wants to Keep Its Engineers Happy

Last week, Facebook formally announced “Hackamonth,” an internal initiative that allows some engineers to leave their team to work on a side project of their choosing. The goal is to prevent burnout among the staff and should result in some cool new products.

Bye Bye Groupon, Hello thruPons?

An ex-Facebooker is looking to clip the multi-billion-dollar, daily-deals industry where it hurts by *gasp* putting local businesses back in control of their own discount destiny. Groupon and assorted clones, meet thruSocial: the first “self-serve” media advertising and deals platform for consumer businesses.

Meet ChoozOn, a Social Network for Shopping Deals

ChoozOn, a start-up co-founded by a trio of former Yahoo executives, is launching a social network built around shopping and personalized deals that works hard to bring brands and consumers together. It will face tough odds going up against Groupon, Facebook, Google and others.

Groupon Hires A Google Global Sales VP As COO

Groupon has hired Margo Georgiadis, a VP of global sales operations at Google (NSDQ: GOOG), as its new COO, according to multiple reports. A…

Groupon Buys Pelago in Bid to Expand User Discovery

Groupon is buying Pelago, maker of local discovery app Whrrl, signaling the end of the check-in service. But it could also mean a broader direction for Groupon as it looks to expand beyond daily deals to more localized and personalized discounts.

Groupon Is Becoming A Lawsuit Magnet

Last year, Forbes called Groupon “The Fastest Growing Company Ever.” Revenue isn’t the only thing that is mounting fast at the daily-deals s…

Facebook Is Not Ready to Take on Groupon

Facebook confirmed it’s working on a Groupon-inspired discount service that will help bring together merchants and its 600 million users. But for all its assets, Facebook doesn’t appear ready to compete fully against social shopping leaders Groupon and Living Social.

SCVNGR Launches LevelUp to Compete With Groupon

SCVNGR is applying game mechanics and a new business model to daily deals in an attempt to strengthen the relationship between merchants and their customers. With LevelUp, merchants offer a series of three deals to consumers, who unlock each one as they try out a business.

Microsoft Chases Daily Discounts With Bing Deals

Microsoft, like its rival Google, sees dollars in daily deals. The company today announced Bing Deals, which integrates daily discount information from The Dealmap into its Bing mobile and desktop sites. The idea puts Microsoft into the same game as Groupon and Living Social.

CardStar Signs On Groupon To Its Loyalty App

Groupon’s runaway success has opened up the market to a number of me-too deals services, from the higher-profile Living Social and BuyWithMe…

Challenges for Hyperlocal Mobile Advertising

Google, Facebook and others are investing in hyperlocal ads that deliver marketing pitches to users within small, well-defined areas. But before the concept can truly take hold in the mainstream markets, several challenges await businesses looking to bring their advertising strategies to the table.

Yahoo Loses Mobile VP Michael Shim To Groupon

More upheaval in the upper ranks of Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) ‘smobile division. The company’s VP of mobile business development, Michael Shim, wil…

Private Media Wants to Be the Groupon of Porn

Porn company Private Media plans to give away a lot of its X-rated content. The move is meant to offer alternatives to unlicensed video sites. So how does Private intend to make money? By running ads for major brands as part of a Groupon-like voucher scheme.

GigaOM This Week: Silicon Valley Executive Shake-up

Apple and Google both made moves at the top, raising questions about the future of both companies. The FCC signed off on Comcast’s bid for NBC. And the daily deals business heated up this week with LivingSocial flexing its muscles while Google launched a Groupon clone.

Groupon Hires A CFO From Amazon

Groupon, which is expected to soon raise an additional round of funding and ultimately try to go public, has hired an (NSDQ: AMZN…

Groupon & the Local Social Commerce Frenzy

This week was dominated by the deal that didn’t happen. While the rumored $6 billion acquisition of Groupon by Google hasn’t been consummated, it seemed to spur action among local e-commerce rivals and prompted a lot of thought about the future of local social shopping.

The Google-Groupon Deal Is Reportedly Dead

Discussions between Google (NSDQ: GOOG) and Groupon have apparently broken off, according to various reports, and the daily deals startup is…

Groupon Turns Down Google’s Takeover Bid

According to multiple reports, Groupon has walked away from a rumored $6-billion acquisition offer from Google, and is choosing to go it alone, and possibly file for an initial public offering. The two-year-old company is said to have annual revenues of close to $2 billion.

Google Wants Groupon Because Social Ads Are the Future

According to multiple reports, Google is considering an acquisition of Groupon for as much as $6 billion. Why would the web giant want to pay so much for a two-year-old startup? Because social advertising — and especially local advertising — is the company’s future.

Groupon Seeks More Cash So It Can Scale

Groupon, the social-buying phenomenon that has already raised more than $165 million in financing in the past year, is reportedly looking for another round that could give the company a market value as high as $3 billion, as it tries to continue its aggressive growth plan.

Is Facebook Moving in on Groupon’s Turf?

Facebook is testing the addition of Groupon-style discount offers to its Facebook Places location feature, according to a report based on an email received by an anonymous merchant. Although unconfirmed, such a move — which would bring Facebook into direct competition with Groupon — makes sense.

Hey Groupon, It’s Time for a Local/Social Roll-up

Local businesses now have awesome tools available to them to monitor, market to, communicate with, give discounts to and reward loyalty from customers. These services are all run separately, even though if they were integrated together they would all be more effective.

Twitter Will Also Get Into Commerce 2.0 with Earlybird

Flash sales and daily deals are so hot right now. Today Twitter took the wraps off @earlybird, a company-run account that will publish and promote offers from advertisers. Initial offers will be targeted at the U.S., but Twitter promises future location-specific and interest-specific deals.

Groupon Buys Mobile Development Firm

Looks like Groupon is plotting a big mobile push. The company has purchased, a mobile development firm which has worked on a number o…

Mihir Shah of on Why Groupon Bought His Company

Groupon, the fast-growing collective buying site, said today that it’s setting up an outpost in Silicon Valley by buying the mobile app development shop We snagged some time with CEO Mihir Shah this afternoon and he explained the background behind the deal.

Tippr Buys Up Patents to Take on Groupon

Could a broad set of patents around collective buying be the ammo Tippr needs to chase Groupon? That’s what CEO Martin Tobias is betting, having bought up the intellectual property generated by bubble-era Mercata from its investor Paul Allen.

Social Travel App "Where I've Been" Gets Funded

Where I’ve Been, a popular Facebook application that lets users chart past and future travel plans and discuss them with friends, has gotten an additional round of funding from the co-founders of Groupon, a group-buying service. Where I’ve Been says it has 9 million registered users.

Is the Groupon Economy Big Enough for Side Businesses?

Addicted to Groupon, where the appeal of an amazing expiring deal gets you in the moment — but then you neglect to use the coupon you bought? Now there’s a site — DealsGoRound — to trade daily deals rather than let them go to waste.