GameStop’s current CEO George Sherman is leaving the company and retaining 1 million shares that are worth more than $150 million, but he’s not the only departing executive headed out the door with a big payout. The Wall Street Journal reported that three other outgoing executives are set to leave the company with paydays in the tens of millions.
GameStop CFO James Bell, who resigned in February, holds shares worth more than $40 million. According to a report, Bell was forced out by new GameStop chairman Ryan Cohen.
GameStop’s chief customer officer Frank Hamlin, who also recently resigned, has an allotment of shares that are worth more than $30 million. And GameStop’s merchandising executive, Chris Homeister, holds 289,000 shares valued at more than $40 million. He is planning to resign from GameStop in the time ahead.
Bell, Hamlin, and Homeister might make even more money, as their employment agreements contain incentives based on GameStop’s overall performance.
These kind of stock rewards are often given to executives as a method of providing an incentive to steer a company to successful times. In the case of GameStop, the stock value is exceptionally and historically high thanks in part to the Reddit short-squeeze situation.
The value of the executives’ stock is related to GameStop’s share price, so it could go up or down when they decide to sell, if they do at all.
Looking ahead, Cohen–who is one of GameStop’s single largest investors–has assembled a new team around him made up of other executives from his pet food company Chewy, as well as people from Amazon.
GameStop just recently sold 3.5 million shares, generating $551 million, to help accelerate GameStop’s growth and digital transformation.
Bloomberg cited sources saying Cohen plans to push “rapidly” into e-commerce, taking some of his learnings from his pet food company Chewy and applying them to GameStop. He also plans to make GameStop’s customer service better and “aggressively” expand the products that GameStop offers. One major potential issue is that GameStop has a lot of physical stores, and the report said the plan is to close stores and transform the ones that do stay open into things like “training centers for aspiring esports gamers.”