An Update on Our Support of Japan: $3.5 Million Raised

We’re thrilled to report that Groupon and our customers have donated $3.5 million to relief efforts in Japan. 25 countries in the global Groupon network partnered with international organizations such as International Medical Corps here in the States and the British Red Cross, raising millions of dollars in just one week. This is the power of collective action and social media.

The situation in Japan is still incredibly volatile; for more information on ways to help, visit the International Medical Corps site or follow them on Facebook.

If you’re interested in the history of Groupon’s support of social causes, including our birth from The Point and the G-Team program, check out this earlier post.

A Sneak Peek of Groupon's Super Bowl Ad (Outtake)

Groupon’s Super Bowl ad is almost here – our very first offline campaign! We just wanted to take a moment to say thanks for all of the interest and buzz. We’re dying to show it to you and I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

While we can’t share our TV spots yet, we thought you’d enjoy seeing an idea that didn’t make the cut. Meet the Groupon addict.

Announcing New Talent at Groupon

We’re thrilled to announce two recent hires at Groupon: Jason Harinstein, SVP of Corporate Development, and Rob Grabowski, Supplies and Operations Temp.

Jason, who has a penchant for the letter ‘G,’ most recently served as Director of Corporate Development at Google. In his six years there Jason oversaw some of the company’s largest and most important deals, including Doubleclick and Feedburner. He also played a key role in building Google’s display advertising business. Jason considers himself a pseudo-Chicagoan as an alum of both Northwestern and University of Chicago, and casually flirted with the idea of being a Cubs fan as a partial ticket holder in the mid-90′s.

Rob, who has a penchant for penchants, most recently worked as an office assistant at comedy house iO Theater in Chicago. He brings a strong week’s worth of experience to Groupon, having briefly served as a Groupon temp in early January 2011. Rob will maintain a rigid package-sorting hierarchy supporting 1,200 Chicago employees while stocking Diet Coke, Vitamin Water and tiny flannel shirts in kitchens across four floors of Groupon headquarters. Rob considers himself a better Chicagoan than Jason, having moved to Chicago three years ago to spark a career in comedy. He very seriously flirts with the aspiration of playing a dead body on Law & Order. (If you can help him do that, email him at rob.grabo@gmail.com.)

Let’s give them a warm welcome – we genuinely consider these two ‘wins’ for our team.

Groupon Rivalry: Who Grew the Better 'Stache?

The moustache — or the “Mo,” as it’s known in Australia — and the month of November — or “November,” as it’s known in Australia — join forces each year for [Movember](http://us.movember.com), a movement extolling the virtues of fine moustachery while also bringing attention to men’s health issues. The rules for Movember are clear-cut: start Nov. 1 clean-shaven, and then spend the rest of the month growing out your handlebar, pencil-thin, or Fu Manchu. The moustache then becomes the ribbon for men’s health, helping to raise awareness and funds for cancers that traditionally affect males.

Much like the commitment to run or walk for charity, the men of Movember, or “Mo Bros,” must commit to growing a moustache for 30 days. Funds raised through Movember benefit the [Prostate Cancer Foundation](http://www.pcf.org/) and [LIVESTRONG](http://www.livestrong.org/).

Follow the jump for more info and the nicest mustache shots you’ve ever seen.

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Groupon Expands Throughout Asia

We’re excited to announce that Groupon has launched Groupon Hong Kong, Groupon Singapore, Groupon Philipines and Groupon Taiwan through acquisition of uBuyiBuy, Beeconomic and Atlaspost, respectively. Now you can shop with us throughout East and Southeast Asia, in addition to Groupon Japan, which launched this summer.

Both uBuyiBuy and Beeconomic are favorites in the local collective buying space, and Atlaspost is a popular location-based social networking site with more than 1.2 million users in Taiwan. You can read more about our expansion here.

Let’s take a moment to welcome them to the Groupon family! Sounds like it’s time to do a photo tour of every Groupon office around the globe….starting in Asia…photographed by me…

Merchant of the Week: Dr. Bill Dorfman’s Century City Aesthetic Dentistry

Today’s featured Merchant of the Week is Dr. Bill Dorfman of Century City Aesthetic Dentistry in Los Angeles, Calif.

When a traditional radio advertising campaign failed to attract a single new patient, Dr. Bill recognized the need for a new marketing tool to reach his desired clientele and drive new patients to his practice. Enter, Groupon. Read Dr. Bill’s full story after the jump.

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Merchant of the Week: Skin Institute, Miami

This week’s Merchant of the Week is Sheila Treadway, owner of Skin Institute in Miami.

Because of her exceptional customer service strategy and commitment to giving new Groupon clientele the same experience as all Skin Institute guests, Sheila has seen a 70% customer return rate from Groupon clients and is excited to share her success story with others.  Shelia’s post is below.

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Featured Merchant of the Week: Blanc Burgers, Kansas City MO

Many people assume the most rewarding part of Groupon is the day of the deal, but for us, it’s the feedback we receive after the feature has closed. Each week we’ll spotlight a different merchant from the U.S. or Canada in a new feature we call “Merchant of the Week” – today, it’s Ernesto Peralta, owner of Blanc Burgers in Kansas City, Mo.

Ernesto was concerned about customer perception of his decision to discount his brand. We’re glad he decided to work with us – twice! To hear his story in his own words, click through to read more.

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September Photo Contest Winner

Kids are great and all…but congrats to Erin M., the mom of six who used the power of Groupon for a much deserved date night with the hubby:

“I left my 6 kids home (yes, 6!) with a babysitter and met my husband for dinner at Thaifoon Restaurant. The food was absolutely amazing and the uninterrupted conversation–even better! It took a little Groupon to push us out the door and we even saved enough to pay the sitter! ;) Thank you Groupon and Thaifoon!”

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