FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: GameStop logo is seen near displayed stock graph in this illustration
FILE PHOTO: GameStop logo is seen near displayed stock graph in this illustration taken February 2, 2021. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

March 26, 2021

By Susan Mathew

(Reuters) – “Meme” stock-in-chief GameStop jumped another 13% in value on Friday, building on a surge since results earlier this week that showed online sales improving and a much-hyped management reshuffle gathering pace.

The video-game retailer, whose shares rose as high as $483 in a battle with short-sellers in January, has now risen more than five times in value since hitting a low of $38.50 per share in mid-February.

It was trading at around $190 by mid-morning, but was still down about 5% on the week after the company pointed to the possibility of a share sale in its earnings filing on Tuesday.

“It’s fascinating because it seems that the Reddit army is doubling down and believing that the company is going to be able to shift their business and pivot to e-commerce,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA.

The company has benefited from a push by retail investors, often on online forums such as Reddit’s popular WallStreetBets, to drive up prices of stocks they believed were undervalued.

Short interest in GameStop has fallen to about 15% of the stock’s float from a peak of 141% in the first week of 2021, according to data from financial analytics firm S3 Partners.

Chewy Inc co-founder Ryan Cohen is seeking to transform the retailer into an e-commerce firm that can take on big-box store rivals such as Target Corp and Walmart Inc.

Chief Financial Officer Jim Bell has departed and the company said this week it had appointed former executive Jenna Owens as Chief Operating Officer.

“The hiring of Jenna Owens is very positively viewed as GameStop now becoming cutting edge and having leadership that could help transform the company,” OANDA’s Moya said, adding that the stock price was still likely to “have a wild consolidation” over the next two months.

Wall Street’s main indexes have had a roller-coaster March as a jump in U.S. government bond yields sparked a sell-off in riskier assets. [.N]

GameStop, which added three new directors including Cohen to its board in January as part of a settlement, said in its annual regulatory filing on Tuesday it expects eight incumbent board members to retire at its 2021 annual meeting in June.

(Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; Editing by Patrick Graham and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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