IPOH!: Groupon Becomes Its Own Hot, Discounted Deal

With the Groupon roadshow underway and the countdown to its IPO expected to culminate on November 4th, the long-anticipated arrival of the daily deals giant on the public markets is almost at hand. But the journey hasn’t been without its fair share of hiccups. While the company currently owns a 54 percent share of the daily deals market and there were some bright spots in its third quarter earnings report, the daily deals juggernaut has fallen from a once hoped-for $25 to $30 billion valuation to one that will likely be around $11.4 billion.

Comparatively speaking, going with that questionable early valuation from its underwriters, at as much as 62 percent off, Groupon itself now represents one helluva deal for the eager coupon clipping investor. Thanks to some hilarious characters on the team at Cat5 Commerce’s Runningshoes.com, we now have an awesome mock deal in which Groupon itself is offering its common stock for the discounted price of $16 a share.

To be clear: This deal has not been created by Groupon itself. This was made by a third party for satirical purposes only; though there will no doubt be many that are fooled by the bargain, as the mock deal page captures Groupon’s design and snarky rhetoric with the precision of a well-sharpened lampoon. Next to deals for Pets.com’s sock puppet and sole ownership of Myspace, Groupon’s common stock looks like a steal. I mean, come on, you can now save $24 a share! You simply can’t beat this basement price. Of course, as it goes, these low prices won’t last forever. Or will they?

As Runningshoes’ Groupon for Groupon states, “The most opulent offer-you-can’t-refuse offer is smack-dab in front of you. Owning a piece of what Forbes deemed “the fastest growing company ever” will be akin to governing a province in the Roman Empire. People on the street? They’ll know your name. People in buildings? They’ll probably know it, too. C’mon. Make Warren Buffett look like a chump today.”

Well played, Runninshoes.com, well played. Especially considering there’s only one small link back to its website hidden down the page, this is meta snarky marketing gold.

Here’s to looking forward to Runningshoes’ roadshow.

For those keeping track, the domain, runningshoes.com, was purchased by Cat5 Commerce back in April for $700,000.

Update: Apparently Groupon didn’t think this was so funny.