##Andrew Mason (former CEO, Groupon)
Started with ThePoint in 2006 - funding to social efforts only if minimum threshold is met. Was not going that well, side project was Groupon which worked out and became fastest growing company in the history.
Copying the company was easy, scaling was difficult, which made us most copied company in the world. Hiring was too fast and culture could be preserved through that.
I am the wrong person to ask on how to preserve the culture. We needed to scale faster since the business was easily copyable, and that destroyed the culture. I hated clones tooth to nail. We met several of them and did business with some of them. I made the mistake of ignoring value alignment, I will be careful about that in future.
Yahoo approached for acquisition. I did not want to sell it to Yahoo, board was interested. I tried to get Google interested in it, since that would be a better place to end up. Holiday season was coming and board decided that its too early to sell.
Going public is awful, biggest mistake of Groupon. 10% (50% for Groupon) of time sucked into complete bull shit which adds no business value. Incentives to think quarterly is too strong to ignore.
New company (Detour)
Location aware audio walks. People feel I am bringing in big company structure to it. Start with customers and work backwards and when we don't we rationalize (which is wrong - we should not do that).