Some of the early backers of Groupon Inc., GRPN +0.84% including Silicon Valley veteran Marc Andreessen, are heading for the exits, joining investors who have lost faith in companies that had been expected to drive a new Internet boom.
At least four Groupon investors who held stock in the daily-deals company before it went public have sold or significantly pared back their holdings in recent months. Since its initial public offering in November, Groupon has shed more than three-quarters of its stock-market value, or about $10 billion.
Groupon's plunging stock price, and the swooning shares of Facebook Inc. FB +3.98% and Zynga Inc., ZNGA +0.83% have rekindled memories of the dot-com bust in 2000. Unlike many dot-com era start-ups, the current companies have healthy revenue and in some cases are turning a profit--but their results aren't matching early expectations.