After having rebuffed internet giant Google's $6-billion takeover, online discount site Groupon is going ahead with its plan for an initial public offering (IPO) in the first half of the year that would value the online discount start up site at $15 billion plus, The New York Times today reported.
The three-year-old Chicago-based company has discussed iys plans for an IPO with bankers this week, the paper said citing two people with knowledge of the deal.
Groupon, the brainchild of its current CEO Andrew Mason, has recently raised a record $950 million in funds from new backers that include Morgan Stanley, T Rowe Price and Fidelity Investments, which had valued Groupon at around $4.75 billion. (See: Groupon raises $500 million in new round of funding)
Excited with the successful record-breaking fundraising by an unlisted company, Mason said, ''We're thrilled that Groupon has earned the confidence of some of the world's most respected investment firms. With their support, we will continue on our mission to change the way people shop locally and serve the world's local businesses.''
Its earlier investors include private equity firms Accel Partners, New Enterprise Associates and Battery Ventures and Russia's Mail.ru Group, formerly Digital Sky Technologies, which has also invested in social networking site Facebook.
Analysts recently valued privately held Facebook at $33 billion, or twice the current value of Yahoo and a quarter of Google's market capitalisation.