UPDATED 12:35 EST / DECEMBER 01 2010

Groupon Buys Ludic Labs, Ponders $6 billion Google Bid

interview-handshake Groupon’s board of directors is meeting today to mull over a $6 billion buyout bid from Google for their crowd sourced coupon service. While waiting, Groupon has decided to make an acquisition of their own; paidContent.org has some coverage of what’s going on, but entire situation is still spotty. They have snapped up Ludic Labs, a company that delivers a local business advertising service for deals, coupons, and other offers—a perfect idea for Groupon to combine with their own.

It has picked up local marketing services firm Ludic Labs. Ludic’s projects include Offer Foundry, a self-service advertising platform for local businesses that lets them offer various types of deals, coupons and lead-gen offers, as well as Diddit, an online community that connects members around various goals.

Groupon will be incorporating features from both services into its site. Ludic Labs is based in Silicon Valley, and Groupon says it will also use the deal to expand its presence there. Ludics Labs CEO Brian Totty, who helped start Inktomi, is joining Groupon as its head of engineering.

No news yet about the whispers in the board of directors meeting, but certainly acquiring their own advertising service on the cusp of musing over a $6 billion buy from Google may change the nature of the initial offer.

Perhaps the Ludic Labs deal had been in the works for a very long time and they were just finalizing today; or maybe Groupon is playing fast-and-loose with the search giant in an attempt to goad them to a higher valuation. Although, at six billion, it’s already extremely high.

The likely outcome is that Groupon doesn’t want to sell out just yet; but we won’t know until we hear back from their board if they’re accepting the offer or not.


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