Oh, Groupon. You have so many users and your IPO looks to be so big and yet the problems? They keep coming. And we aren't talking about restaurant owners sick (or not) of dealing with Groupon's coupon-wielding masses. There are at least 12 federal lawsuits challenging the coupon company's business practices, and now the state of Connecticut is thinking that maybe Groupon breaks the state's laws simply by doing its thing—namely letting its deals expire.
You see, it turns out that the coupons that Groupon sells can possibly be classified as gift certificates, and in the fine state of Connecticut it is illegal for gift certificates to expire (which is not the case in New York). As such, the state has written to the company regarding its business practices and Groupon has until August 5 to reply. How the company responds will be interesting considering the importance of deal expiration to the company's business model. Could Connecticut force Groupon out of its borders the way that California effectively forced Amazon to kill its Associates program in that state?
In the meantime Groupon, which has dozens of competitors nipping at its heals, continues to move forward with its planned $750 million dollar IPO (despite some funny financials). And those federal lawsuits? They've consolidated for pre-trail proceedings in San Diego (PDF). While we wait for Groupon to respond to Connecticut (or us), we guess we'll just be grateful that the company seems to have stopped airing those kinda-offensive ads?