Food and gift basket sales increased 4.7%, but total e-commerce, which includes online and telephone orders, increased less than 1%.
GrouponLive will launch ahead of the summer concert season.
Daily-deal provider Groupon and concert promoter Live Nation Entertainment Inc. today announced they have formed a venture to develop an online discount ticketing service called GrouponLive.
The GrouponLive.com site will offer limited-time deals for tickets to concerts, sporting events, theater productions and other live events. Consumers can sign up for the site’s e-mails, which GrouponLive will begin sending in time for the summer concert season, the companies announced.
"For us, it's a pretty straightforward reason why this makes sense for us--these guys know live events," says a Greg Rudin, Groupon's senior vice president of special operations. "They are a leader in the space and have direct access to live event ticket inventory across categories."
Similarly, Groupon offers LiveNation a large audience accustomed to scooping up deals, he says.
"Doing this joint venture fully aligns our interests and assures them that they have regular access to our audience and assures us we have regular access to their inventory," says Rudin. "When we're in this together and we share a strategic long-term vision we can work together in a way that wouldn't be possible otherwise."
The relationship will provide Live Nation with a new channel it can use to drive sales, says Michael Rapino, Live Nation Entertainment president and CEO. "By adding this channel to our ticketing platform, we will also provide our venue partners with another option for driving ticket sales across a wide range of events.”
While Facebook says that its Groupon-like Deals venture will also focus on offering consumers social experiences like concert tickets, Rudin says that the social network's entry into the daily deal space was not a factor in the launch of GrouponLive.
"We've been working on this relationship for some time and I can confidently say that their announcement was not a catalyst for this deal," he says.
The deal marks the latest attempt by Groupon to broaden the scope of its business. Last month the company bought Pelago, creator of location-based check-in service Whrrl. It also recently launched a Home & Garden service that offers deals tied to the specific category.
Rudin says that the launch of GrouponLive showcases the daily deal provider's willingness to partner with "market leaders."
"If it makes sense to partner with other leading companies in other important categories who can help us bring awesome deals to consumers, we will," he says. "At the end of the day, we're highly practical and know the most important thing is to satisfy consumers."