GameStop gearing up to name Cohen as its chairman

Meme stock GameStop is gearing up to name Ryan Cohen as its chairman on Wednesday when the video game retailer holds its annual shareholders meeting.

Cohen, the co-founder of Chewy, was nominated for the position by GameStop in April. GameStop added Cohen and two of his former Chewy colleagues to its board in mid-January, after Cohen had pressed the retailer to focus on its online operations. The current board chair is Kathy P. Vrabeck.

The meeting will be held in Grapevine, Texas, where GameStop is based. CEO and director George Sherman will attend the meeting in-person, with the rest of the board attending virtually.

GameStop was the face of the meme stock phenomenon early this year, when the struggling company’s shares suddenly surged 1,625% in January. Meme stocks did lose momentum following their January supernova, but they began soaring again recently. Movie theater operator AMC’s stock quintupled for the two-week period that ended last Wednesday, for example. GameStop is back above $250 after dropping from a peak of $347 in late January to $40 a few weeks later.

The company became a favorite among retail investors at a time when it was being pummeled as new technology allowed people to download games, rather than buying a physical copy from GameStop or somewhere else. That shift threatened the existence of GameStop and its shares had been more than halved, to $20 each, by the start of this year. But the support from retail investors sent its shares skyrocketing shortly after, and market pundits urged the company to put more shares on the market as the price spiked. GameStop did just that in April, announcing it would sell up to 3.5 million of its shares. Such a sale gives the company the opportunity to pay down debt or pursue a new business plan if it chooses.

GameStop will also be reporting its fiscal first-quarter results after the market closes on Wednesday.

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