Groupon has filed paperwork for an initial public offering in what many are already viewing as a test case for the latest web bubble.
The daily deals site is seeking to raise $750 million through the offering, with investors using the launch as a barometer of the present tech-market.
Long-awaited, Groupon was giving little away about the deal, with the number of shares to be sold in the IPO, the price range, and the exchange all kept under wraps.
However, Groupon did reveal shares would trade under the symbol “GRPN”.
Groupon generated $645 million in revenue for the first three months of financial 2011, close to the $713 million in revenue recorded for all of 2010.
While strong, concerns remain over the potential for another bubble in the tech-market following the 2001 crash.
Groupon co-founder and chief executive, Andrew Mason, has, however, sought to allay fears.
“If you are thinking about investing, hopefully, it is because, like me, you believe that Groupon is better positioned than any company in history to reshape local commerce,” he wrote in a letter to potential stockholders.
LinkedIn Corp and Renren Inc, of China, have both seen successful launches recently, while all eyes are on Twitter and Facebook for potential offerings in 2011/12.
Google – which had an offer turned down for Groupon in 2010 - has begun such a service to rival the young start-up.
Groupon warned in its IPO filing it has incurred losses ever since its birth nearly three years ago.
Concerns were also raised technology at the company may not be up to the task of handling demand, expenses will rise, and that the market may not continue to grow.
“As with any business in a 30-month-old industry, the path to success will have twists and turns, moments of brilliance and other moments of sheer stupidity,” concluded Mason.
Take a look at the Breaking Travel News view on the future of Groupon here.