Groupon Inc (GRPN): Andrew Mason Was Not the Problem

Sorry Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN), cutting off the head won’t save you.

4 High-Growth IPOs to Own in 2013As you’ve probably heard by now, founder and CEO Andrew Mason was ushered out yesterday by the board after the daily deals specialist posted another dismal quarter. The company posted a surprise adjusted loss of $0.05 when analysts had expected a $0.03 profit, and first-quarter guidance was also well below expectations.

Rumors of Mason’s ouster had been swirling since November, and it’s certainly understandable why he got the axe. As he readily admitted in his farewell letter, in its brief period as a publicly traded company, Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN) had been haunted by an accounting scandal, consistently missed its own guidance, and seen its share price lose roughly 75% of its value.

While it’s easy to blame the CEO for such problems, Mason deserves credit for launching a model that many had failed at before, and the company’s quirky, sassy style helped it establish itself as the market leader, beating out better-funded rivals like Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)-backed Living Social and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG).