Groupon says it may cut back on marketing costs

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NEW YORK (AP) ? Groupon Inc., which sells online coupons for local merchants, on Friday said it expects to cut back on its online marketing in the future because it won’t be yielding attractive returns.

The Chicago-based company spent $345.1 million in online marketing in the first half of this year, the company said in a regulatory filing. That’s nearly half of its revenue for the same period.

The filing was an updated version of its filing statement for its upcoming initial public offering. The previous version of the filing merely said that Groupon expects “to continue to expend significant amounts to acquire additional subscribers.”

In the update, the Chicago-based company clarified that changes in “subscriber economics, achievement of subscriber-saturation levels in various markets or a determination that subscriber growth objectives can be satisfied though alternative means” will likely lead it to cut back its spending. That shouldn’t affect how much its subscribers spend on coupons, since the marketing is intended to recruit new subscribers, it said.