Groupon's Mason to tie the knot right after planned IPO

NEW YORK Mon Aug 22, 2011 1:11pm EDT

Groupon founder and CEO Andrew Mason attends the second day of the Allen and Company Sun Valley Conference in Sun Valley, Idaho on July 7, 2011. REUTERS/Anthony Bolante

Groupon founder and CEO Andrew Mason attends the second day of the Allen and Company Sun Valley Conference in Sun Valley, Idaho on July 7, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Anthony Bolante

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - This fall is shaping up to be one to remember for Groupon Chief Executive Andrew Mason.

The co-founder of the online coupons empire is planning to make his company public. He is also planning to tie the knot with "dream-pop" musician Jenny Gillespie, who has several albums out, including one on which Mason plays accordion.

Groupon is aiming for a mid- to late- September IPO, despite recent market tumult that has shelved several flotations for the time being, several people familiar with the company's plans who spoke on condition of anonymity told Reuters.

The IPO's final timing depends on the company answering any remaining questions from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the stability of the markets. If there were any delay, it could interfere with 30-year-old Mason's wedding plans.

A spokeswoman for Groupon said there has not been any delay of the IPO timeline and it is still on track for this fall. She confirmed Mason and Gillespie are planning to marry in October, but would not specify a date.

Calls to the soon-to-be newlyweds were not returned.

According to a wedding registry with Boulder, Colorado-based home goods store Peppercorn, the couple plans to tie the knot on October 1. They have expressed interest in a handful of items, including a Le Creuset French casserole pan and a "creamer cat," a small, cat-styled dish for serving cream.

The couple loves cats. They live with more than 20 of them in Chicago, according to Mason's official Groupon biography. The often wacky entrepreneur famously had a photo taken for a recent magazine profile with a cat perched atop his head.

Those working on the IPO are aware of the October wedding and have been trying to accommodate it, one person familiar with the situation said.

Chicago-based Groupon filed with U.S. regulators in June for an IPO of up to $750 million. It has not yet said how many shares it or shareholders -- including Mason -- hope to sell, or set a price range.

While Groupon's IPO should happen just as Mason and Gillespie begin life as a married couple, there also have been IPOs dogged by couples dissolving their marriages.

The ex-wife of Tesla Motors Inc CEO Elon Musk, in a blog post entitled "Gold-digger" ahead of the company's summer 2010 IPO, demanded a Roadster electric sports car, 10 percent of Musk's stake in the electric carmaker, 5 percent of Musk's stake in space exploration company SpaceX, $6 million, alimony and support for their five children.

More recently, the IPO of Chinese online video company Tudou Holdings Ltd was delayed after the former wife of its founder, chairman and CEO, Gary Wang, filed a lawsuit.

(Reporting by Clare Baldwin; additional reporting by IFR's Stephen Lacey in New York and Alistair Barr in San Francisco; editing by Edwin Chan and Andre Grenon)

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