Acquisition Rumors Link Google, Groupon

    November 19, 2010

Daily deals site Groupon might soon become the property of another company whose name starts with "G" and contains a couple "o"s, according to a new report.  Supposedly Google (the company in question, if you couldn’t guess) is willing to write a pretty big check, too.

Kara Swisher reported earlier this morning, "According to multiple sources close to the situation, Google is in discussions with local deals powerhouse Groupon about buying it. . . .  [S]ources said the price being considered is certainly no discount – well above the $2 billion to $3 billion that Yahoo offered Groupon in acquisition talks that took place earlier this year."

GoogleThe idea of an increased bid seems reasonable, since the Yahoo discussions obviously didn’t work out.  Also, Google had $33.4 billion in cash, cash equivalents, and marketable securities just sitting around as of September 30th, so the company can afford to pay a little more.

As for the deal itself, it makes a degree of sense, as well.  Saving money has become a popular activity, and Groupon is among the top players in the field.  Its ties to Facebook and Twitter, along with its mobile presence, then add additional value.

Still, Swisher noted, "But there is one major issue in a possible Google purchase of Groupon: Even more regulatory scrutiny by the federal government over its power online."