Gamestop Suddenly Fires CEO, New Chairman Posts Cryptic Tweet Hours Before Announcement Shares of the electronics retailer plummeted up to 20% early Thursday.
Shares of video game retailer Gamestop plummeted up to 20% early Thursday after the chain announced that CEO Matthew Furlong had been suddenly fired.
"Matthew Furlong, one of the director nominees named in the Proxy Statement, was terminated without cause as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company on June 5, 2023 and resigned from the Board, effective immediately," the company said in an SEC filing on Thursday.
There was no further reason given for the termination.
Billionaire investor and Chewy founder Ryan Cohen was appointed executive chairman, effective immediately.
Cohen did not make a formal statement upon his appointment but Tweeted late Wednesday afternoon "Not for long."
Not for long— Ryan Cohen (@ryancohen) June 7, 2023
It is unclear what exactly he is referring to, but it is a play on words with Furlong's last name, possibly indicating the announcement that was to come Thursday morning.
Prior to that, Cohen Tweeted a chart about CEO compensation, which showed that the average CEO is paid roughly 351 times as much as the average worker in the same industry.
Per a 2022 report from MarketWatch, it was estimated that Furlong was paid $16.8 million in 2021 for six months of work.
"Leadership transitions can be inherently difficult to manage, and failure to timely or successfully implement transitions may cause disruption within the Company, including execution of our transformational plans," Gamestop warned in a filing, noting that it "may adversely impact" financials and company performance.
Furlong was made CEO in 2021 after spending nine years at Amazon, marking him as the fifth CEO to leave the company in the span of five years.
The leadership shakeup came as Gamestop reported that net sales had fallen another 10% through the fiscal first quarter of 2023 ending in April, bringing a fourth consecutive quarter of revenue decline. Revenue came in at an estimated $1.24 billion.
As of early Thursday afternoon, Gamestop was still down over 18.5% in a one-year period.