Groupon Founder Andrew Mason Out as CEO The embattled founder's memo to staff details why he was dismissed.

By Jason Fell

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

iHub

Andrew Mason, co-founder of Chicago-based daily deals website Groupon, has been replaced as CEO, the company announced today. Executive chairman and co-founder Eric Lefkofsky and vice chairman Ted Leonsis will take the helm while the company searches for a full-time replacement.

In a memo, Mason said he was dismissed for several reasons: "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."

Mason added, "I love Groupon, and I'm terribly proud of what we've created. I'm OK with having failed at this part of the journey."

A Groupon spokesperson declined to comment but verified Mason's memo.

Related: Overcoming the Groupon Effect: How to Sell Merchants on Your Start-Up Deal Site

Mason most recently came under fire following Groupon's worse-than-expected fourth quarter earnings report this week. The company posted a loss of $81.1 million and indicated revenue growth was to slow down in the first quarter of this year.

Indeed, Mason had been in the hot seat for some time, as reports surfaced last year that the company was unsatisfied with his leadership and had already started looking for a replacement.

Founded in 2008, Groupon effectively pioneered the popularity of daily-deal sites. The company went public in 2011 with early estimates pegging its value at about $11 billion. But Groupon quickly fell out of favor with customers as well as some merchants, with business owners complaining that the deals are difficult to manage and often don't drive additional profits.

"As a founder, Andrew helped invent the daily deals space, leading Groupon to become one of the fastest-growing companies in history," Lefkofsky said of Mason in the announcement.

Related: 5 Influential CEOs Weigh in What Makes a Good Leader

Jason Fell

VP, Native Content

Jason Fell is the VP of Native Content, managing the Entrepreneur Partner Studio, which creates dynamic and compelling content for our partners. He previously served as Entrepreneur.com's managing editor and as the technology editor prior to that.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Related Topics

Science & Technology

Save Nearly $400 on This 13-Course Excel, VBA, and Data Science Bundle

Pick up this e-learning bundle for $35, this week only.

Growing a Business

How to Regain Your Passion for Your Business — And How to Keep It Alive

Is your passion fading? Here's how to create a business model centered around keeping your passion alive and well.

Science & Technology

4 Reasons Why Your Customer Service Is About to Get a Whole Lot Better in 2024

As the technology powering AI customer support jumps to the next level, the quality of service will greatly improve.

Management

The 4 Pros and Cons of Being a Part-Time CEO

The idea of a part-time CEO is gaining traction. But before you make the switch, here are some pros and cons to consider.

Business News

Want to Start a Billion-Dollar Business? Look to These Two Industries, Which Have the Most Unicorn Growth

During a tough fundraising year overall last year, the value of cybersecurity and AI unicorns saw double-digit growth.

Business News

'I Want a Free Month': Thousands of Customers Furious at AT&T After Widespread Outages

The carrier has not yet disclosed the root cause of the issue.