Groupon's IPO is Friday. Here are 10 reads on what the word is on the street (and the Street):
* Groupon Gropes for Growth, Barron's: "Morningstar analyst Rick Summer pegs fair value for the stock at $8 a share (half its current level), or a $5 billion market value. His concerns include Groupon's lack of an 'economic moat,' and potential 'deal fatigue' among consumers barraged with e-mails from Groupon and other services."
* Groupon IPO a Must as Cash Needs Climb, Bloomberg: "The company has used 85 percent of the $1.11 billion it has raised from venture capitalists and other investors to buy equity from early investors eager for a return, instead of funding growth."
* Groupon's Latest Value Raises Doubt, Andrew Ross Sorkin, New York Times: "[A]s several investors told me, anyone putting money into Groupon actually has to believe that its value could reasonably rise by, say, 50 percent in the next couple of years, making it a $15 billion company."
* How Groupon Is Growing—And Growing Up, CNET: "Not bad for a company that basically ran on spreadsheets that were e-mailed around."
* How to Justify Groupon's Valuation, Felix Salmon: "Groupon has its huge subscriber base now — which means it’s ready to attack Phase 2 of its plan, and really start monetizing them."
* How Much is Groupon Worth?, Business Insider: "I realize I'm probably in the minority here, but I think Groupon will eventually have a nicely profitable business."
* Groupon's Fall to Earth Swifter Than its Fast Rise, BusinessWeek: "[I]nterviews with analysts, investment managers and merchants tell the story of a company that grew too fast as it raced to go public."
* Groupon is Technically Insolvent, Grumpy Old Accountants: "Our prediction that Groupon has a high probability of failure remains intact."
* No Need to Rush Into Groupon's IPO, CNBC: "Many early holders of Amazon, however, had to wait years and years before they made any money on their shares (assuming they didn't sell before the bubble deflated). Eventually, their loyalty was rewarded."
* Groupon Propped Up With Lowest IPO Float in a Decade, BusinessWeek: "Groupon's last round of financing in January valued the company at about $4.75 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said at the time."
Photograph: Chicago Tribune