Vatornews.TV is reporting on their website today that Google has closed the deal and purchased group discounting website Groupon.com for a reported 2.5 billion dollars. Vator News cites a reliable but unamed source. Requests for comment to Vator News, Mashable and Thedroidguy.com have gone unanswered as of now (it is Sunday night Thanksgiving weekend)
If the reports are in fact true than Google got their own “Black Friday” deal as the valuation of Groupon buy other analysts was closer to 3 billion. It was also reported that earlier in the month, Groupon had turned down a deal with Yahoo for 1.7 billion.
Groupon has been under the Google acquisition rumor radar since November 19th when Kara Swisher of All Things Digital, reported that Google and Groupon were alreaedy in discussions. Although they have been the subject of acquisition rumors Groupon has maintained that they want to stay independent.
Groupon has a revenue of about $50 million per month and operates in 29 countries. Groupon has users sign up in a particular location and sends out a daily deal to those users, for example let’s say the Groupon coupon for the day in Baltimore was for Dunkin Donuts. They send out an email that says Buy one dozen get another free or half price for a dozen donuts. Groupon than works with the merchant to find out how many people need to “buy” into the offer before they actually release the coupon. Once the offer has reached XX takers the deal is live and you can go into Dunkin Donuts and get the deal. In some cases the deals don’t get enough takers and are cancelled.
Chicago based Groupon just received the Oprah treatment when they did a deal with Nordstrom’s after Oprah talked about the company.
A buyout from Google would make a lot of sense as Google is trying to improve their social and location based offerings.