Hangin’ Tough: Groupon’s Stock Closes in Single Digits for First Time

Selling a pair of tickets to see New Kids on the Block for $10,000 today didn’t stop Groupon’s stock from closing below $10 a share.

The daily deal company’s shares slid 3.3 percent, or 34 cents, to settle at $9.97 a share today, marking the first time its stock closed in single digits.

At that price, the company’s value hovers around $6.4 billion, which is getting uncomfortably close to Google’s $6 billion buyout offer that the Chicago company turned down in late 2010.

Groupon has been unable to regain investor confidence since revising its fourth-quarter results at the end of March despite putting out a string of press releases. Over the past couple of weeks, it has hired a new SVP, Kal Raman, and appointed two new directors with accounting expertise.

Today, it sold a package that included a pair of tickets to see New Kids on the Block, a ride on a roller coaster with the teen heartthrobs and round-trip airfare, among other activities, for $10,000, or roughly half off.

Now Groupon is also half off. (I’m pretty sure the NKOTB’s lyrics “Hangin’ Tough” can apply.)

At less than $10 a share, Groupon’s stock is 50 percent below its IPO price of $20 a share.

For CEO Andrew Mason, it means watching his shares decrease from $1.3 billion at the stock’s peak on day one to roughly $470 million today.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work