EBAY - eBay Inc.

NasdaqGS - NasdaqGS Real-time price. Currency in USD
31.93
+0.75 (+2.41%)
As of 1:20PM EDT. Market open.
Stock chart is not supported by your current browser
Previous close31.18
Open32.08
Bid32.01 x 1100
Ask32.02 x 900
Day's range31.56 - 32.22
52-week range26.02 - 42.00
Volume4,964,109
Avg. volume14,500,082
Market cap25.419B
Beta (5Y monthly)1.05
PE ratio (TTM)15.26
EPS (TTM)2.09
Earnings date20 Apr 2020 - 26 Apr 2020
Forward dividend & yield0.64 (2.18%)
Ex-dividend date27 Feb 2020
1y target est38.34
  • It’s a Quibi! Quirky Streaming Service for Smartphones Is Born Into Quarantining Nation
    Bloomberg

    It’s a Quibi! Quirky Streaming Service for Smartphones Is Born Into Quarantining Nation

    (Bloomberg) -- After a long stint embedded in his home office, Jeffrey Katzenberg felt almost ready to take a break. He was looking forward, he said on a Zoom call in late March, to watching more of “Tiger King,” the wacko documentary series from Netflix about big-cat trainers behaving badly, which was currently captivating large numbers of homebound viewers. A few years ago, Katzenberg said, he’d come across Joe Exotic, the incarcerated zookeeper at the center of the Florida-noir series, and had considered making a show about him. But it never came to pass, and now he was in the same boat as everybody else, stuck at home, watching the hit program on Netflix. The special powers of exotic animals seemed to be lingering on his mind. The press could hound him all they wanted but he didn’t scare easily, he explained. He leaned forward, took a pinch of his arm, and held it up to his computer’s camera. “This is rhino skin,” said Katzenberg. In the days ahead, he will certainly need all the big rhino energy he can muster.  On Monday, Katzenberg and his business partner Meg Whitman, the former chief executive officer of EBay, are overseeing the much-anticipated launch of Quibi, a short-form mobile video service that arrives into a crowded field of fierce competitors who are digging in for a long, bloody battle. Quibi, which will eventually cost $5 a month with ads, or $8 without them, will roll out 175 shows this year. The kaleidoscopic slate of programming is a mix of comedic series, dramas, reality shows, and topical news programs — all of  it serialized into brief episodes. The idea is to reach out and grab users’ attention for a few minutes at a time whenever they’re idly staring down at their phones. In one cooking competition, food is blasted out of a cannon onto participants’ faces. In another show, a sex therapist talks about how to date during a pandemic.While Quibi can sometimes sounds like a film school fever dream, it’s one of the more ambitious projects to emerge in recent years from the crossroads of Hollywood and Silicon Valley. To date, the company has collected about $2 billion worth of investment, much of it coming from major media companies. It has written checks to some of the biggest celebrities in the world. Steven Spielberg and Bill Murray are contributors. “The first thing you have to understand is, if you are a storyteller and you work in Hollywood — movies, television, animation, I don’t care, any part of it — you are an entrepreneur,” said Katzenberg. “And that entrepreneurial spirit hasn’t been tapped in a while.”Despite Katzenberg’s impressive track record in the entertainment business, plenty of competitors, critics and industry analysts are betting on Quibi to lose. “Our reaction out of the gate was: ‘I think this is gonna be pretty tough,’” said Stephen Beck, founder and managing partner of management consulting firm CG42. “Free short-form video on your mobile phone already exists, and you can get a lot of it by relatively big-name stars.”  See, for example, YouTube. Katzenberg said he has found some of the more pointed criticism of the yet-to-launch service downright amusing. In February, the New York Times published a lengthy essay by writer Dan Brooks entitled “What’s a Quibi? A Way to Amuse Yourself Until You’re Dead,” which argued that the service cynically aimed to exploit consumers’ already unhealthy addictions to smartphones. Katzenberg said that after reading the piece, he reached out to its author and set the guy up with a phone loaded with Quibi content. That’s Rhino Skin, buddy. (Brooks said in an email the shows he saw were “uneven.”) “I asked my kids: ‘Are your friends watching stuff on their phones?’ They said: ‘Absolutely.’ So we wrote the script.”On Feb. 2, Quibi ran a Super Bowl ad in which a bunch of bank robbers wait for their getaway driver, who is distracted mid-heist by a Quibi show on his phone. Tagline: “Episodes in 10 Minutes or Less.” In the weeks that followed, Katzenberg and his colleagues were planning to advertise heavily during other major sports events, including March Madness. The campaign was supposed to culminate with a star-studded premiere party at 3Labs in Culver City, California. All of it was conceived to generate a ton of free press. Getting Quibi’s quirky-sounding name out as much as possible was important. Outside of the entertainment and media industries, few people knew what Quibi was. In a poll commissioned by the Hollywood Reporter and Morning Consult in March, 81% of adults said they’d heard little or nothing at all about Quibi. But before Quibi could promote itself to America’s legions of live-sports viewers, the pandemic hit and the entire sports industry ground to a halt. Quibi would have to turn elsewhere for introductions en masse. In mid-March, with businesses and schools shutting down around the country, Katzenberg, Whitman and the board discussed the possibility of delaying Quibi’s April 6 launch date. "We said, ‘OK, we can launch, but should we launch?’” Whitman told Bloomberg Television. “We’re not health-care professionals, we’re not first responders. But we thought what we do is inform, entertain and inspire. So we thought we could bring a little joy and light and levity to people’s challenges right now. So we decided to go."Rather than postponing, they tweaked the rollout. They decided to give away the service for free for the first 90 days, a way of appealing to cash-strapped viewers suddenly grappling with a dire economic situation. Quibi also shifted the focus of its advertising blitz away from live TV events and onto social media.Katzenberg and his colleagues have since rolled out a campaign in which the company is paying its series’ stars like Chrissy Teigen to hype Quibi on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok. Meanwhile, many contributors in Hollywood are watching the launch with curiosity.  Peter and Bobby Farrelly, the fraternal screenwriters known for comedies like “Dumb and Dumber” and “There’s Something About Mary,” have a Quibi show in the works, entitled “The Now,” starring Dave Franco and Bill Murray, which will premier in May. In separate phone interviews, the Farrelly Brothers said it was a little weird to make a film that needed a cliffhanger every 10 minutes, but ultimately that it was “a fun experiment.”“I rarely watch things on my phone, certainly not television,” said Peter Farrelly. “So I asked my kids: ‘Are your friends watching stuff on their phones?’ They said: ‘Absolutely.’ So we wrote the script.”While the new service may feel experimental, Katzenberg is quick to point out that Quibi has plenty of historical precedents. He cites Charles Dickens as a producer of Quibi-like narratives, as well as Dan Brown, the author of “The DaVinci Code.” Both writers, Katzenberg said, were masters of feeding audiences long stories in installments. For readers lacking time or self-discipline, that meant they could consume a sprawling, complex tale in brief increments over weeks or months without losing the plot. Quibi’s kickoff comes not long after the debut of Disney+, the robust streaming service that arrived in the U.S. in November and quickly attracted more than 28 million subscribers. Disney can be a tough act to follow. Katzenberg should know. During the ’80s and early ’90s, he oversaw a major revival of Disney’s animation division. While he may have missed out on “Tiger King,” back in 1994, he found an epic feline hit in “The Lion King,” which went on to gross hundreds of millions of dollars at the box office for Disney and has since spawned an impressive litter of spinoff movies and shows. These days, “The Lion King” franchise is still hard at work, attracting streaming subscribers to Disney+. “They got 100 years, the greatest brands ever known, the most amazing library ever, and ‘The Mandalorian,’” said Katzenberg, referring to a popular Star Wars show.Quibi, by contrast, has got some interesting mobile viewing technology, a large batch of unproven programming and some great expectations.  Katzenberg said that of the 50 shows that Quibi will offer people in the first two weeks, he expects eight to 10 to go viral. “Meaning, in the same way we’re laughing about ‘Tiger King,’” he said. “You’re hearing about it through a connection. We’re not allowed to be around one another, but we are all still connected.” For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • EBay (EBAY) Gains As Market Dips: What You Should Know
    Zacks

    EBay (EBAY) Gains As Market Dips: What You Should Know

    EBay (EBAY) closed the most recent trading day at $29.41, moving +0.75% from the previous trading session.

  • Coronavirus-Led Volatility Rises: 5 High Earnings Yield Picks
    Zacks

    Coronavirus-Led Volatility Rises: 5 High Earnings Yield Picks

    Dodge the COVID-19 pandemic by investing in these high earnings yield stocks.

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: America Movil, eBay and Cardinal Health
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: America Movil, eBay and Cardinal Health

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: America Movil, eBay and Cardinal Health

  • eBay, Cinemark, Teladoc, UnitedHealth and Humana as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day
    Zacks

    eBay, Cinemark, Teladoc, UnitedHealth and Humana as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day

    eBay, Cinemark, Teladoc, UnitedHealth and Humana as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day

  • Bull of the Day: eBay (EBAY)
    Zacks

    Bull of the Day: eBay (EBAY)

    Bull of the Day: eBay (EBAY)

  • Zacks Value Trader Highlights: eBay, Pfizer, JPMorgan Chase, Intuitive Surgical and Edwards Lifesciences
    Zacks

    Zacks Value Trader Highlights: eBay, Pfizer, JPMorgan Chase, Intuitive Surgical and Edwards Lifesciences

    Zacks Value Trader Highlights: eBay, Pfizer, JPMorgan Chase, Intuitive Surgical and Edwards Lifesciences

  • Designer Face Masks Are Going for $200 a Pop Online
    Bloomberg

    Designer Face Masks Are Going for $200 a Pop Online

    (Bloomberg) -- Gwyneth Paltrow posted an Instagram photo Monday on her way back from the farmer’s market. In it, she’s wearing a black dress and a matching black face mask. Her label of choice for the latter is a Swedish company called Airinum AB.Designer face masks have been around for at least a decade, a niche market catering to the chronically sick along with frequenters of Burning Man and fashionistas in Beijing. Now, amid the coronavirus pandemic, they are a coveted accessory for wealthy people around the globe. And for others, they’re a new symbol of inequality at a time when protective equipment for medical workers is in woefully short supply.View this post on Instagram A post shared by Gwyneth Paltrow (@gwynethpaltrow) on Mar 22, 2020 at 4:44pm PDTAirinum and other popular makers of trendy masks, including Cambridge Mask Co. and Vogmask, typically sell products in an assortment of colors and sizes and tout advanced air filtration and memory foam fitting for the wearer’s nose. Unlike paper masks often used by health care professionals, these can be washed and reused.The products are normally priced at $12 for a basic black Cambridge mask or as much as $69 for a pearl pink Airinum. But those two companies are out of stock until at least next month. Airinums have sold for more than $200 apiece on EBay in the last week and Vogmasks for about $150 on average.QuickTake: Mask or No Mask? This Is What the Virus Experts SayEBay Inc., along with Amazon.com Inc. and other online retailers, have come under pressure for enabling sellers to price gouge on essentials like masks and hand sanitizers. In response, the companies said they would ban such listings. The high-end masks exist in something of a gray area because they’re luxury products by design.In the eyes of government officials, though, they’re still masks. San Francisco-based Vogmask manufactures all of its products in South Korea, which enacted an export ban this month on medical masks. Wendover Brown, the company’s co-founder, said 80,000 finished and packaged products are waiting in a warehouse near Incheon, unable to pass through customs. “The product is just sitting there, not helping anyone,” Brown said. Vogmask is now exploring options to manufacture in the U.S.The global mask shortage is a severe problem for medical staff. Apple Inc. and Facebook Inc. are among companies helping source and donate masks to hospitals, and officials have urged people not to hoard them. Christian Siriano, a prominent fashion designer, and the French workshops of Balenciaga started producing masks to shore up supplies for health care workers.It’s in this light that Paltrow’s pandemic glamor shot attracted some outrage. In comments on the post, several people chastised the actress for being tone deaf and urged her to donate the mask to a health care worker and advocate for others to do so. “Medical staff have been begging people to contribute these,” one person wrote. “These should only be available to those on the front lines.”A spokeswoman for Paltrow declined to comment. On Wednesday, Paltrow posted on Instagram saying she and her husband had donated to the Frontline Responders Fund, which is raising $10 million to get critical supplies to workers combatting the virus.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • US Government Reaches Deal on Stimulus Package: 5 Top Picks
    Zacks

    US Government Reaches Deal on Stimulus Package: 5 Top Picks

    The U.S. government and Senate reached an agreement to inject $2 trillion of stimulus to boost the U.S. economy amid the coronavirus-induced turmoil.

  • Ebay and Amazon urged to clamp down on coronavirus profiteering
    Yahoo Finance UK

    Ebay and Amazon urged to clamp down on coronavirus profiteering

    Third-party sellers are ripping-off consumers on online marketplaces by listing overpriced items that are difficult or impossible to find in local shops due to the coronavirus.

  • AMETEK (AME) Completes Sale of Reading Alloys to Kymera
    Zacks

    AMETEK (AME) Completes Sale of Reading Alloys to Kymera

    AMETEK (AME) recently completes the sale of the Reading Alloys business to Kymera International for $250 million.

  • AeroVironment, Bright Horizons Family Solutions, Amazon, eBay and Atlassian highlighted as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day
    Zacks

    AeroVironment, Bright Horizons Family Solutions, Amazon, eBay and Atlassian highlighted as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day

    AeroVironment, Bright Horizons Family Solutions, Amazon, eBay and Atlassian highlighted as Zacks Bull and Bear of the Day

  • Amazon Suspends Almost 4,000 Seller Accounts Over Price Gouging
    Bloomberg

    Amazon Suspends Almost 4,000 Seller Accounts Over Price Gouging

    (Bloomberg) -- Amazon.com Inc. said it has suspended thousands of seller accounts for price gouging during the coronavirus pandemic.The operator of the largest U.S. online marketplace said it has pulled well over half a million offers and suspended more than 3,900 selling accounts in the U.S. for violating its fair pricing policies.Amazon said it deployed a dedicated team to identify and investigate “unfairly priced” products that are in high demand, such as protective masks and hand sanitizer.“We are also proactively sharing information with state attorneys general and federal regulators about sellers we suspect have engaged in egregious price gouging of products related to the COVID-19 crisis,” the company said in a statement Monday.U.K. in Lockdown; Trump Wants U.S. Reopened Soon: Virus UpdateSince the coronavirus outbreak escalated in the U.S., there have been runs on hand sanitizer, toilet paper, bleach wipes, meat and canned soup, among other products. Some people have attempted to sell cleaning products and other supplies at inflated prices on Amazon, EBay Inc. and other sites.U.S. President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Monday to prevent hoarding and price increases of supplies.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Bloomberg

    States Pursue More Than 5,000 Complaints of Price Gouging

    (Bloomberg) -- Amazon, Walmart, EBay and other large online sellers were urged by state law enforcement officials to crack down on price gouging that preys on panic over the coronavirus pandemic amid surging complaints by consumers.The attorneys general of New York and California called on the companies Friday to take action as 6,000 complaints have poured in to authorities across the U.S. in the past month, with outrage expressed at everything from $80 hand sanitizer to a 50% hike in rice prices.“Price gouging during a time of national emergency is not only disgraceful, it is illegal,” California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a statement. “Large online marketplaces have a responsibility to the public to take immediate and vigorous steps to eliminate predatory behavior, which they know is illegal, from their platforms.”As Americans hunker down and hoard to survive the coronavirus pandemic, regulators are rushing to stamp out exploitative pricing. They’re poring over emails, sending inspectors to check out tips and firing off cease-and-desist letters, according to an analysis by Bloomberg of data and reports from more than 40 states.Amazon tweeted a response to Becerra and said it welcomes the opportunity to work with officials to help prosecute “bad actors.”“We are disappointed that bad actors are attempting to artificially raise prices on basic need products during a global health crisis and, in line with our long-standing policy, we have recently blocked or removed hundreds of thousands of offers,” the company said in a statement.Online platforms don’t have the incentive to self-police themselves because they get a cut of each transaction, including every pack of toilet paper sold for $60, said Tristan Snell, a lawyer with Tristan Snell Pllc who previously worked on consumer protection issues for the New York attorney general’s office. Many of the abuses are coming from sellers using Amazon and Walmart third-party platforms to jack up prices for household staples, he said.“There’s no doubt that online commerce has exacerbated this problem,” he said. “The idea of cornering a market was something that used to be reserved for millionaire financiers. It’s a very old timey kind of thing. But we literally are at a point where people can corner the market in hand sanitizer.”Read More: States Chase Price Gougers With 6,000 Complaints Pouring InWalmart, eBay and Craigslist didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.Retailers of all sizes are in now in the cross-hairs. In Washington, the state with the first confirmed case of the virus in the country, Attorney General Bob Ferguson is sending a team of 10 investigators to stores to examine products on the shelf and issuing subpoenas to websites.“Washingtonians are facing a life-and-death situation” and need access to “critical goods,” Ferguson said in an interview. “My mom is 91 years old. It’s important for individuals like my mom to have access to hand sanitizer. They can cost 60 bucks for a four-ounce container.”The complaints spiked after President Donald Trump declared a national emergency last Friday, leading many state and local governments to do the same. They come as authorities in Europe grapple with similar concerns. On Friday, the U.K.’s competition regulator launched a task force to crack down on such exploitation. The European Union’s anti-fraud office said it’s probing sales of fake medical and personal protection products.While some U.S. states already have laws on the books that ban price gouging, generally defined as boosting a price 10% or more in a crisis, emergency declarations often trigger temporary measures.The Oregon AG’s office on Wednesday got a complaint about a supermarket in Beaverton selling 20 pounds of rice for $29, almost $10 more than usual, according to spokeswoman Kristina Edmunson, who said the office was preparing its first cease-and-desist letters. Twitter was rife with hashtags such as price gouging and panicbuying. Users called out two-pack face masks at $19.95, up from $1.50, and 12 jumbo rolls of Kroger toilet paper on eBay for $99.95 plus $11.75 for shipping -- or best offer.“I’m outraged that anybody would try to profiteer on a crisis, particularly on items that are necessary for the health and safety of Ohioans,” Attorney General Dave Yost said in a statement Thursday. “We don’t have a price-gouging law in Ohio because we believe in free markets, but free markets don’t include the idea of holding toilet paper and surgical masks hostage.”Most of the complaints are in the East, with New York topping the list at 1,350. In New York City alone, the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection has received more than 1,000 calls since March 5, when the city’s first rule against virus-related price increases was enacted.In addition to a 1.2-liter bottle of hand sanitizer for $79.99 at a hardware store in Midtown, New Yorkers could snap up a box of 100 disinfectant wipes at a drugstore in Chelsea for $100.Read More: That $400 Bottle of Hand Sanitizer Is Very Hard to Police(Corrects law firm name in seventh paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Microsoft, HP, Garmin, Applied Materials and eBay
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Microsoft, HP, Garmin, Applied Materials and eBay

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Microsoft, HP, Garmin, Applied Materials and eBay

  • Starboard nominates four to eBay's board, wants outsider as CEO
    Reuters

    Starboard nominates four to eBay's board, wants outsider as CEO

    The hedge fund, which last year helped fill one board seat, said the board had been slow in changing its chief executive and tackling issues including separating eBay's classifieds business from its marketplace business. EBay said on Thursday the nominations are "unwarranted and unreasonable." Starboard said in a letter that it wants the board to appoint an outsider as permanent chief executive after eBay has been headed by an interim CEO for six months.

  • Amazon.com (AMZN) in Focus: Stock Moves 7% Higher
    Zacks

    Amazon.com (AMZN) in Focus: Stock Moves 7% Higher

    Amazon.com (AMZN) saw a big move last session, as its shares jumped 7% on the day, amid huge volumes.

  • Bet on These High Earnings Yield Stocks Amid Coronavirus Scare
    Zacks

    Bet on These High Earnings Yield Stocks Amid Coronavirus Scare

    Check out these five stocks with high earnings yield to power your portfolio.

  • Italian antitrust watchdog probes Amazon, eBay over price spikes in virus crisis
    Reuters

    Italian antitrust watchdog probes Amazon, eBay over price spikes in virus crisis

    Italy's antitrust watchdog said on Thursday it was investigating e-commerce giants Amazon and eBay for an allegedly excessive rise in the price of products such as hand sanitiser during the coronavirus crisis. Italy is the country hardest hit by the virus in Europe, with more than 1,000 deaths and a nationwide lockdown. The antitrust authority said in a statement it had opened a probe into the two companies' subsidiaries in Italy and in Europe in relation to an unwarranted spike in prices of items such as disinfectant gel and protective masks.

  • Twitter CEO Pressed by Elliott to Meet Lofty Growth Targets
    Bloomberg

    Twitter CEO Pressed by Elliott to Meet Lofty Growth Targets

    (Bloomberg) -- Jack Dorsey’s job at Twitter Inc. is still on the line.On Monday, activist investors who had taken aim at the chief executive officer gave him a chance to prove that he should remain at the helm of the company he co-founded. The deal may only delay the inevitable, analysts said. Elliott Management Corp., known for aggressive moves to oust CEOs, essentially put Dorsey on a performance-improvement plan, committing him to meet metrics that would be challenging to achieve normally -- and may be impossible at a time when a viral contagion threatens global economic expansion.Twitter, a social-media platform known for its short messages posted in real time, is most useful when people tune in online for live updates from events, news and sports matches. The company’s advertising strategy revolves around showing marketing messages to those who are logged in. A settlement with Elliott and private equity firm Silver Lake includes requiring Twitter to assign three new seats on its board to the firms, to post user gains of at least 20%, and to accelerate revenue growth and grab a bigger share of the digital-ad market.The news cycle in 2020, on the surface, would seem to offer a strong opportunity for Dorsey to make strides toward those goals. The U.S. presidential election and the Summer Olympics in Tokyo are the kinds of events that prompt user activity and engagement, and even the spread of Covid-19 could lead more people to log in to check for updates on the outbreak.But the upside to user growth and ad revenue from these events may be limited. Twitter has banned political ads, meaning rivals Google and Facebook Inc. have picked up most of the gains from the largest presidential campaign spending year on record. Coronavirus-watchers may not be in a buying mood, and advertisers may be budgeting less overall as the health crisis puts their own businesses at risk. Festivals, concerts and movie openings are being canceled or postponed, and sports organizers are considering holding games without fans. Without these tweet-centric moments of optimism, advertising opportunities disappear, said Michael Levine, an analyst with Pivotal Research Group.Within the next couple of weeks, for instance, the NCAA is going to decide whether to allow fans to attend March Madness, the annual college basketball tournament. It’s the kind of event that is heavily tweeted, during which advertisers take advantage of a surge in activity to sell products. Even more crucial is the upcoming Olympics. If the Olympics were to be canceled or postponed, “it would be a huge missed opportunity for hitting these metrics,” Levine said. The global sporting event was “going to be a very positive way to showcase they’re being way more sophisticated around advertising than they were three years ago,” he said.Against this backdrop, Elliott’s ambitious targets for Twitter seem even more formidable. The firm’s 20% year-over-year growth target for “monetizable” daily users, or Twitter users that can be served ads, is almost double the rate analysts already projected. The company exceeded that rate in 2019 for the first time in years, and investors don’t expect Twitter to keep it up. Rivals have had to dramatically invest in building or acquiring new products to expand their appeal -- like Facebook with its acquisitions of WhatsApp and Instagram, and the introduction of a disappearing-post format to rival Snapchat Inc. Twitter’s product cadence has been slower; the company just last week introduced its version of disappearing posts, called “Fleets,” four years after Instagram copied Snapchat’s similar feature.“It’s going to require expanding beyond their niche of super active users,” said Rohit Kulkarni, an analyst at MKM Partners. “Acquiring users and holding users is getting more and more expensive on the internet,” even for giants like Facebook and Alphabet Inc.’s Google. Activist investors don’t usually look kindly on a company growing less profitably, even if they’re growing faster.Elliott, which wanted to remove Dorsey as CEO on concerns that he was distracted and not delivering enough value for shareholders, announced a compromise after intervention from Silver Lake. San Francisco-based Twitter agreed to take a $1 billion Silver Lake investment, in part to fund share buybacks, while also agreeing to add three members to its board and a panel to evaluate Dorsey’s progress.The activist investing firm may have stopped short of immediately removing Dorsey in part because of the strong cultural pull he has at Twitter. Even though he simultaneously leads Square Inc., Twitter’s board reinstalled him as CEO almost five years ago because having founder status in Silicon Valley affords a level of moral authority over the product direction.Dorsey will need more than moral authority to reach the goals set by Elliott. He’ll likely have to take more dramatic steps, possibly by changing the product more than he has in years.By setting such lofty targets for Dorsey, Elliott may be playing the long game, figuring it will get its chance to come back for the executive if he fails to meet them. When Elliott’s been involved in turnarounds with other target companies, its team has shown little mercy to the C-suite. The CEOs of Citrix Systems Inc., EBay Inc. and Athenahealth Inc. were given chances to meet new growth goals once Elliott filled seats on their boards, but eventually lost their jobs after they missed the mark. In the case of Athenahealth, Elliott acquired the company in a partnership with Veritas Capital -- something that could happen with Twitter, especially considering Silver Lake’s past interest in acquiring the company.In 2015, when Dorsey returned to Twitter, the board had the same qualms as Elliott has now: Twitter’s product direction was unclear, and its growth rate was lackluster. While Dorsey has executed a turnaround for Twitter’s share price since then -- with Twitter up about 21% since he permanently took over that October -- it has lagged behind other tech companies like Facebook, which has about doubled. Twitter’s persistently middling sales-growth rate seemed to confirm investor fears that it was never going to be the next tech giant. Twitter remains less than a 10th of Facebook’s size by daily users, with all of its same problems, from bullying and hate speech to misinformation and political turmoil. The company commands less than 1% of the digital advertising market, according to EMarketer, compared with 32% for Google and 21.1% for Facebook.While Elliott is calling for faster sales growth after 2020, that’s also not an easy win for Dorsey. Twitter’s revenue rate is projected to tick up only slightly this year, to 15% from to 14% last year, according to analysts’ estimates tracked by Bloomberg. That’s without accounting for a possible slowdown or recession from the public-health crisis unfolding globally. In the following two years, analysts predict slightly slower growth.Even those who agreed on the metrics acknowledge there’s some uncertainty about the outcome. Because of the current economic fallout from coronavirus, Twitter’s statement on the settlement deliberately framed the goals as “ambitions,” as opposed to targets or forecasts, according to a person familiar with the matter.The fact that Elliott didn’t immediately replace Dorsey may reflect the strong support for him among employees, and “acknowledgment that he’s crucial to the ethos” of Twitter, according to Mark Shmulik, an analyst at Bernstein. Employees describe Dorsey as a philosophical thinker. Rounding out his soulful demeanor is a lifestyle that includes bouts of fasting, silent meditation retreats, ice baths and oversized black T-shirts. He rejects corporate expectations in favor of his gut, like a decision to spend up to six months of this year in Africa, learning about the future of payments and working remotely for both his CEO jobs. He’s “re-evaluating” that decision now, he said last week.But unlike other legendary Silicon Valley founders, Dorsey hasn’t always been in charge at Twitter, nor does he have enough voting power to put up a fight himself.“Dorsey’s position may remain under scrutiny through 2020,” Shmulik said. “For investors that were hoping for a radical change overnight, the announcement may be a little disappointing.”\--With assistance from Scott Deveau.To contact the reporter on this story: Sarah Frier in San Francisco at sfrier1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at jward56@bloomberg.net, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • EBay (EBAY) Gains But Lags Market: What You Should Know
    Zacks

    EBay (EBAY) Gains But Lags Market: What You Should Know

    EBay (EBAY) closed the most recent trading day at $36.04, moving +1.46% from the previous trading session.

  • Bloomberg

    Twitter, Elliott in Truce Over Board, Silver Lake Investment

    (Bloomberg) -- Twitter Inc. will appoint three new directors to its board and create a committee to review its leadership and governance, as part of an agreement with activist investor Elliott Management Corp. and private equity firm Silver Lake. The pact leaves Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey in place.Silver Lake will also make a $1 billion investment in the social media company, which Twitter plans to use to fund part of its first ever share buyback, set at $2 billion.Elliott’s head of U.S. activism, Jesse Cohn, will join Twitter’s board immediately alongside Egon Durban, co-Chief Executive Officer of Silver Lake, the firms said in a joint statement. A third independent director will be appointed at a later date.The board will also form a committee, including Cohn and Durban, that will evaluate a succession plan with Dorsey and make recommendations on the company’s corporate governance, including the potential elimination of its staggered board. The committee plans to share the results of its review by year-end.Twitter rose about 4.5% to $34.96 at 11:58 a.m. in New York trading, giving the company a market value of about $27.4billion.The settlement comes a little over a week after Bloomberg News first reported that Elliott took a sizable stake in Twitter to push for changes, including potentially replacing Dorsey. The New York-based firm nominated four directors to Twitter’s board, people familiar with the matter said at the time.Elliott took issue with Dorsey dividing his time between running Twitter and his role as CEO of Square Inc., the payments company, the people said. Dorsey had also said he planned to spend up to six months of the year working in Africa, a plan he has since said he will reevaluate.“As a board, we regularly review and evaluate how Twitter is run, and while our CEO structure is unique, so is Jack and so is this company,” said Patrick Pichette, lead independent director of San Francisco-based Twitter, in Monday’s statement.Tough MetricsAs part of the deal, Twitter set a goal of hitting some tough performance metrics, including growing its monetized daily active users in 2020 and beyond by 20% or more, accelerating revenue growth on a year-over-year basis and gaining share in the digital advertising market.If the company doesn’t perform well, Dorsey could still be replaced or investors could push for a sale of Twitter, according to people familiar with the matter, who asked to not be identified because the matter is privateDurban, who became co-CEO of Silver Lake in December, first reached out to Dorsey directly after the initial Bloomberg News report on Elliott’s stake, the people said. Silver Lake has a long history with Elliott and Twitter, which it had looked at acquiring in the past. Durban acted as a peacemaker of sorts, the people said, and agreed to invest $1 billion in the company, sit on its board and to have Silver Lake’s operations team help improve Twitter’s performance. Durban is a supporter of Dorsey and believes the CEO cannot be swapped out immediately, they said.Representatives for Silver Lake, Elliott and Twitter declined to comment.Other SettlementsThe settlement is similar to ones Elliott has reached at other companies, including Citrix Systems Inc. and EBay Inc., where eventually CEOs at both companies were replaced.Cohn was appointed to Citrix’s board in 2015 in conjunction with then-CEO Mark Templeton’s departure. Cohn was appointed to EBay’s board in January as part of a settlement with Elliott and fellow activist Starboard Value. Devin Wenig stepped down as EBay CEO in September after failing to grow the company’s marketplace platform and clashing with the board about not wanting to sell its classifieds business, people familiar with the matter said.Good JobA lot of Twitter employees think Dorsey is doing a good job and his departure as CEO would be disruptive, according to Kevin Rippey, an analyst with Evercore ISI.“The issues with Twitter aren’t related to management, they’re largely grounded in challenges around technical infrastructure,” Rippey said in an interview Monday.Silver Lake’s investment will be made through Twitter’s 0.375% convertible bonds due 2025. As part of Monday’s settlement, Elliott, which owns about a 4% stake in Twitter, and Silver Lake, have signed a standstill agreement.“Twitter serves the public conversation, and our purpose has never been more important. Silver Lake’s investment in Twitter is a strong vote of confidence in our work and our path forward,” Dorsey said in the statement.“We welcome the support of Egon and Jesse, and look forward to their positive contributions as we continue to build a service that delivers for customers, and drives value for stakeholders,” he added.(Updates to add details starting in ninth paragraph)\--With assistance from Nikitha Sattiraju, Crystal Tse and Sarah Frier.To contact the reporter on this story: Scott Deveau in New York at sdeveau2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Liana Baker at lbaker75@bloomberg.net, Elizabeth Fournier, Ben ScentFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

By using Yahoo, you agree that we and our partners can use cookies for purposes such as customising content and advertising. See our Privacy Policy to learn more