Groupon Inc.’s (NASDAQ: GRPN) fourth-quarter results were so bad that there is new talk about firing CEO Andrew Mason. The problem with this is that he and two others control the company’s voting shares.
Fourth-quarter consolidated revenue totaled $638.3 million, up 30% year-over-year, but that was not as spectacular as Wall St. had hoped. The fourth-quarter GAAP loss per share of $0.12, including $0.07 loss per share from a non-operating item, compared with a loss per share of $0.12 in fourth quarter of 2011.
But the thing investors liked the least was that revenue for the first quarter 2013 is expected to be between $560 million and $610 million, an increase of between 0% and 9% compared with first quarter of 2012. Shares sold down as much as 14% on the news.
A look at Groupon’s proxy shows Mason owns 19.5% of voting shares, while Chairman Eric P. Lefkofsk owns 27.7% and Bradley A. Keywell owns 10%. Mason will not be going anywhere unless his co-founders turn against him.