Groupon names co-founder Eric Lefkofsky as CEO as Q2 earnings top estimates

Groupon has named co-founder Eric Lefkofsky the company's new CEO, alongside its second quarter earnings announcement, which topped estimates.

Sales for Q2 were $608.7 million (£392.7 million), a year on year rise of seven per cent on the same period. This was supported by a smaller-than-expected net loss of $7.57 million (£4.88 million), or $0.01 per share.

The announcement sent Groupon shares soaring by up to 19 per cent over extended trading.

"We significantly exceeded our operating income expectations, and delivered our strongest quarter ever in North America, due in part to accelerated billings growth of 30 per cent," said Lefkofsky.

The daily deals firm also outlined a $300 million (£193.5 million) share repurchase programme over the next two years.

Lefkofsky is the company's biggest shareholder, with a 17 per cent stake, and he also controls 26 per cent of the shareholder vote. He is not without controversy however; his comments about the profitability of the company before the initial public offering led to regulatory scrutiny.

Groupon has struggled hugely since going public in November 2011 - the company lost 87 per cent of its value over the following year.

The board ousted co-founder Andrew Mason as CEO in February of this year, naming Lefkofsky and Ted Leonsis as interim co-CEOs. Leonsis has now been named Chairman.

"The Board is encouraged by Groupon's performance under Eric's leadership, and we're pleased that he has agreed to lead the company through this important stage of its evolution," said Leonsis.