Groupon hunts for new No 2 to manage flotation

Groupon, one of several internet companies that offers users money-off vouchers to spend at local businesses, is looking for a new No 2 executive to steer it through a US stock market flotation after parting ways with its existing chief operating officer.

Rob Solomon, who was hired by Groupon just a year ago, is standing aside to allow it to recruit what he called "a nuts and bolts operator to make the trains run on time".

Bankers have told Groupon that having the right senior management team in place will be vital if it is to command the lofty valuation it hopes to achieve in a flotation, which could come later this year.

The company, based in Chicago, raised $950m (£584.8m) from venture capitalists last year when it was valued at $4.7bn, but recent reports suggest it could float at a valuation of up to $25bn thanks to its strong growth. The company turned down a $6bn takeover bid from Google.

Although Groupon's finances are opaque, it is believed to have made revenues of $760m last year and to be on course for at least $3bn in 2011. The company has grown from 200 employees when Mr Solomon joined in March 2010 to around 6,000 now.

"I'm great at a lot of things," he told Bloomberg News after his resignation was made public. "But I'm not the guy who wants to run a 10,000-person company. I'm much better at the startup and growth stage."

Mr Solomon joined Groupon before it was 18 months old from Technology Crossover Ventures, a California investment firm. Before that he held a string of Silicon Valley posts including chief executiveships of start-up tech companies and a six-year stint running Yahoo's online shopping business.

Analysts said that finding a heavyweight replacement for Mr Solomon will be important for the success of a flotation. Last month, it was reported that Groupon had tried to poach Jason Kilar, chief executive of Hulu, a US internet television venture, to run its international operations.

Groupon was founded and is still run by Andrew Mason, a 30-year-old former music student.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - B2B, Corporate - City, London

£45000 - £50000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

Neil Pavier: Commercial Analyst

£50,000 - £55,000: Neil Pavier: Are you a professionally qualified commercial ...

Loren Hughes: Financial Accountant

£45,000 - £55,000: Loren Hughes: Are you looking for a new opportunity that wi...

Sheridan Maine: Finance Analyst

Circa £45,000-£50,000 + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a newly qualified ac...

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
11 best bedside tables

11 best bedside tables

It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

Italy vs England player ratings

Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

An underdog's tale of making the most of it

Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat