Late last night, Twitter tongues wagged as to whether Groupon’s goofy CEO Andrew Mason would actually show up for his scheduled appearance at Business Insider’s Ignition conference in New York, especially after his name disappeared from the agenda.
“He has been off most relevant agendas for quite some time. The exception, of course, is the SEC watch list,” Interview Circuit founder Jon Sterling quipped, referencing the beleaguered company’s repeated run-ins with the commission (most recently over revenue details from its new business lines and questions about the daily deal site’s financial revision this spring.)
Mr. Mason’s presence seemed even less likely after scoop master general Kara Swisher trotted out sources who claimed discussions were underway about “making major leadership changes” at Groupon, “including bringing in a more experienced CEO to take over for co-founder Andrew Mason.”
We thought for sure that would send Mr. Mason on a flight back to Chicago, and so did Business Insider, until they got the good news:
On the contrary, we got a call from Mason’s team saying, in effect, “Well, now you have an interesting first question.”
We’re not sure how loosely to interpret that “in effect.” Perhaps it was more like: Go ahead and try to get something out of him?
Regardless, there’s one particular bit from Ms. Swisher’s report about the company needing its own Eric Schmidt that we hope gets addressed. Is the problem really with Mr. Mason or Groupon’s meandering business model?