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TRADE WARS
Groupon surges on takeover chatter
by Staff Writers
New York (AFP) Dec 7, 2012


Groupon shares surged Friday as market players reacted to chatter about a possible takeover for the troubled online deals company.

Groupon closed with a gain of 22.97 percent at $4.68.

The Chicago-based firm made no comment on reports of takeover talk. Nor did Google, which made an unsuccessful $6 billion bid for Groupon a year ago.

Shares in Groupon have plunged by some 80 percent since a keenly anticipated public offering late last year. But the company has been hit by concerns about its business model, "deal fatigue" from consumers and questions about accounting.

Groupon in September reported a loss of $3 million in results that came up shy of most analyst forecasts for a small profit.

Its main rival LivingSocial said last month it was cutting 400 jobs, or nearly 10 percent of its staff, in a retrenchment which follows big losses for the company.

The firms aim to make money by selling members deals for discounts on activities, items or services and then splitting the proceeds with the businesses involved.

Both firms have been seeking to diversify, but have been struggling to become profitable.

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Hong Kong (AFP) Dec 7, 2012
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