Groupon CEO Andrew Mason Responds to Rumors that He’ll Be Replaced

By Alex Weprin 

Groupon founder and CEO Andrew Mason says that he isn’t surprised that Groupon’s board is talking about replacing him, saying “I care far more about the business than about being the CEO.”

Mason was interviewed at the Business Insider Ignition conference in New York, and was asked point blank by Henry Blodget what he thought about the rumors.

“Here’s a news flash: our stock is down about eighty percent since we IPO’d a year ago. It would be weird if the board was not discussing whether I was the right guy for the job,” Mason said. “If I ever thought I wasn’t the right guy for the job, I would be the first one to fire myself.”

Mason argued that he is setting the company up for long-term growth, and that is not reflected in the recent stock prices.

“We have built up a resiliency to the external noise, because we know that what is in the best interests of our shareholders is not optimizing for 3 months from now, but optimizing for 3 years from now,” he said. “Our stock is going to reflect long term performance.”

At the end of the interview, Blodget again pressed Mason on what he thought would happen at the company shareholder meeting tomorrow. Mason took a moment, and responded with a statement that seems to suggest that while he wants to remain CEO, he isn’t sure what will happen.

“As the founder and creator of Groupon, as a large shareholder, as a customer of the product, I care far more about the business than about being the CEO.”

Image by Annette Shaff via Shutterstock.