While I think in the very long run this one will end badly, I expect fireworks Friday as Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) comes public with one of the smallest floats ever seen. (less supply = artificially high prices) Obviously this one has a name recognizable to the retail masses, which will also help feed the frenzy.
- According to sources close to the situation, daily deals site Groupon is planning on pricing its IPO tomorrow and officially becoming a public company Friday, listing on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol GRPN.
- The company and its investment bankers have not yet decided whether to boost the price of the offering, now aimed to raise $540 million at a valuation of $11.4 billion. Although the Chicago-based Groupon has endured an unusual amount of controversy over a variety of issues — including accounting treatments, executive turmoil and growth prospects — sources said the offering is likely to be oversubscribed as investors clamor to get into a possibly lucrative IPO.
- Executives from Groupon, including its CEO Andrew Mason, have been hawking the company — which sells an assortment of discounted services from a variety of local merchants — to investors all over the country. Despite the intense criticism, the quirky Groupon had pushed on through and will now face its toughest test — acting like a big-boy company with public shareholders.