Groupon alleged to have altered merchant agreement
According to the lawsuit, Groupon added language that would require BidMyCrib.com to honor a consumer's voucher so long as the consumer made an appointment prior to the voucher's expiration date. The lawsuit states that Groupon added the language “while those emails [containing the merchant agreement] are in post-transmission electronic storage.”
The voucher for house-painting services promoted by BidMyCrib.com through Groupon was available to Groupon consumers in Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio, and expired on July 1 and July 8 for the respective markets.
A copy of the merchant agreement included in the lawsuit shows that Groupon sent the merchant agreement via email and requested that BidMyCrib.com reply to the email with “Agree” in the subject line or body for the agreement to take effect.
BidMyCrib.com did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
A study published by Rice University in July found that less than half of 324 businesses surveyed that had run a promotion through Groupon said they would do so again. In September, Groupon began a Groupon Rewards pilot program that would incentivize consumers to become repeat customers of Groupon merchants.
Groupon's initial public offering last month generated $700 million.