New Groupon boss as Samwers back away

Veit Dengler
Veit Dengler

Veit Dengler
Groupon today announced ex-Dell exec Veit Dengler (pictured) as new senior vice president for international operations, replacing Berlin’s Marc Samwer (Rocket Internet).

The Samwers have advised Groupon since its acquisition of Rocket Internet clone CityDeal in 2010. In a short statement today, Groupon CEO Andrew Mason praised the Samwers for building an “extraordinary team that’s grown our international business to account for more than half of our revenue”. The release described the exit as a long-planned transition.

Groupon spokesperson Heather Dickinson told VentureVillage that while Marc and Oliver Samwer will remain advisors, Dengler will take over day-to-day responsibilities.

Can Dengler bring Groupon back under control?

Fast-growing Groupon is now under fire following a revision of its first public results, from a net loss of $42.7 million (fourth quarter 2011) downwards to $65.4 million.

Groupon pinned the revision on a discovery that executives had failed to set aside enough money for customer refunds, reportedly prompting a US Securities and Exchange Commission probe.

An endless stream of competitors in international markets, plus current financial difficulties, mean Austrian native Dengler will have a tough road ahead. He’s spent time with Proctor & Gamble and McKinsey, has a Master’s degree from the JFK School of Government and most recently led Dell’s Eastern European and Russian operations – and Groupon might be the biggest challenge yet.

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[photo credit pressebox.de]