As Ryan Cohen nets $60 billion from his activist exit, Bed, Bath & Beyond's stock plummets

As Ryan Cohen nets $60 billion from his activist exit, Bed, Bath & Beyond's stock plummets ...

Bed & Bath & Beyond's stock plummeted Friday following SEC filings late Thursday that Ryan Cohen, the retailer's second-largest shareholder, had completely withdrawn his near-12% share in the business.

According to the filings, Cohen's RC Ventures no longer owns any shares in Bed, Bath & Beyond. After earning almost $60 million from the sale of 9.45 million shares over the past two days at prices ranging between $26.2713 and 18.6848 per share, the company has sold the shares.

In no small part, the sale was aided by a350% rise in the previous three weeks, owing to notably high retail trading volume, as well as a jump in interest linked to a so-called'short squeeze' that seeks to penalize investors who invest in a particular stock.

According to recent data from S3 Partners, Bed, Bath & Beyond holds around 55% of its outstanding shares, with a wager against the retailer totaling more than $400 million.

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Cohen persuaded the retailer to consider several strategic alternatives, including the sale of its lucrative buybuy Baby division, and the removal of CEO Mark Tritton, who left the company in June.

Bed, Bath & Beyond said on Thursday that it's been "working expeditiously over the past several weeks with external financial advisors and lenders on strengthening our balance sheet" and will update investors before the end of the month on any additional capital raising plans.

In pre-market trading, Bed, Bath & Beyond stocks were marked 40.7% lower, indicating a $11.00 opening bell price, a move that would result in a two-day decline of roughly 62%.

As retail investors, burned in part by Cohen's surprise decision to leave Bed, Bath & Beyond, dumped stocks in the money-losing video store that is also headed by the RC Ventures founder, GameStop (GME) shares fell 10.4% to $34.00 each.

According to data from the website, which tracks real-time mentions on Reddit's r/wallstreetbets chatroom, Bed, Bath & Beyond is now the most-discussed stock among users, with activity up 66 percent from yesterday to around 26,600 individual posts. GameStop is second with 4,526 points.

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