Tuesday, November 23, 2010 myBiz Blog
MarketWatch 11.29.10 by Katie Coon

Stay current with what's happening in the business world...

Groupon considering selling itself to Google

Groupon Inc. is weighing whether to sell itself to Google Inc. or to proceed with a round of fundraising that may value the daily coupon company at more than $3 billion, said two people with knowledge of the matter.  Groupon management met this week and is leaning toward a sale, though the company may take until the end of the year to make a final decision.  Groupon, a Chicago-based startup, would give Google more of the $133 billion U.S. local advertising market and help it benefit from surging demand for coupons, sent via the Web, for products and services. Google Chief Executive Officer Eric Schmidt is stepping up the pace of acquisitions to spur growth and keep from losing business as Facebook Inc., the largest social networking service, adds features and lures Web surfers.  Source:  BusinessWeek

J Crew Confirms $3B Buyout; 3Q Net Falls 14%

J. Crew Group Inc. (JCG) confirmed plans to be taken private for $3 billion as the clothing retailer reported fiscal third-quarter earnings fell 14% on weaker margins and it slashed its earnings view for the year. An investor group made up of private-equity firms TPG Capital, a former owner of J. Crew, and Leonard Green & Partners plus Chairman and Chief Executive Millard Drexler will pay $43.50 a share, a 16% premium to Monday's closing price.  The stock was recently trading at $43.88, topping the offer price. But despite this month's 38% surge, J. Crew shares are still down 1.9% this year after nearly quadrupling in 2009. The bid is in line with where the stock traded as recently as June.  J. Crew has recently begun to show signs of sales weakness amid a lack of fashion hits, discounting by competitors and efforts to elevate the price of some of its merchandise to luxury status. As such, the company slashed its earnings outlook for the fiscal year, now projecting $2.08 to $2.13 a share, down from August's reduced view of $2.25 to $2.35.  Source:  WSJ