Who is he?
Andrew Mason is an American entrepreneur best known for being the brains behind daily deals website Groupon.
Born in 1980 in Pennsylvania, Andrew is from an entrepreneurial family with his father the owner of a diamond-selling business and his mother the owner of a photography business. Business is not his only love though; music has also featured heavily in his life with Andrew being a degree graduate in music and also appearing in a punk band as a keyboardist. He is married to pop/folk singer, Jenny Gillespie, and once claimed to share his apartment with “over 20 cats”.
Following on from his parents’ lead, Andrew Mason’s entrepreneurial spark was present from an early age. At 15, he started a Saturday morning delivery service called “Bagel Express”, delivering bagels to houses, and moved onto owning a computer-repair company when he was around 16.
By the time he was finished with university courses and after a variety jobs within music and other business industries, Andrew was provided with $1 million in “seed money” to kick-start a website called ‘The Point’ which aimed to bring together prospective fundraisers for a variety of projects. Although now defunct, it served to become the first steps in creating Groupon in 2008.
For those unaware of Groupon (or who have never had the urge to purchase a cheap getaway or Egyptian cotton towels with 87% off), Groupon is a site that sells a number of deals to a number of local businesses and then pushes them out to their 50 million+ subscribers. Groupon then make their revenue by taking a 50% cut from every deal (plus credit card charges) which resulted in reported revenues of $1.84 billion with Andrew at the helm. His Groupon story did not end too well however, as he was dismissed as Groupon’s CEO in February 2013 after the company missed expectations for sales and failed to hit the mark for profit.
Out of business
Since leaving Groupon, Andrew Mason stuck to the quirky path his career had found itself on by releasing a motivational rock album called Hardly Workin’ in July 2013. Andrew says the 7 song album was inspired by aimed at people who would “arrive at orientation with minimal understanding of basic business wisdom” and features tracks such as “The Way to Work,” “My Door is Always Open” and a track inspired by hip-hop called “Stretch”.
In perhaps a cruel twist of Groupon-influenced irony, he was also reported to have sold his Chicago home for $4.07 million, a discount of almost $800,000 from the asking price.