Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Groupon CEO Andrew Mason Jokes About Google’s Groupon Killer

Last night Google showed off a would-be Groupon killer, which combines daily deals with its Android mobile platform.

So what do you think of that, Andrew Mason?

“I gotta say, the Buzz integration is just seamless,” the Groupon CEO tells Kara Swisher onstage at the D9 conference. Cue much laughter.

OK, but seriously. What do you think about Google’s efforts, and everyone else’s, to take you on?

“As much as I personally hate it and want to kill everybody, I think competition is great for consumers,” Mason offers up. “I hope they push the space forward. I’m more passionate about the space, and the way that people buy locally, than I am about the success of Groupon.”

Throughout the interview, Mason alternates between earnestness and goofball. For the latter, see his response to any question he doesn’t want to answer, like: When are you going to IPO? Or: Why didn’t you sell your company for $6 billion to Google? Mason’s trick, which is a good one, is to say nothing while clenching his teeth and starting straight ahead, twitching. It’s unnerving and funny, and seems to go over well with the audience.

Eventually Mason does try to answer the Google M&A question, and lapses into platitudes. And then he corrects himself again: “This is why I don’t like answering the questions. Because I immediately start saying bullshit.”


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Failure isn’t a problem. It’s the fear of failure that’s the limiting factor. You can’t lose your nerve for the big failure, because it’s the exact same nerve you need for the big success.

— DARPA director Regina Dugan