Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne leaves

  • Push-out Score determined
  • After almost 20 years in the position
  • Praise for Byrne
  • Jonathan Johnson taking over in the interim
  • Byrne kept it short and said 60 words

(exechange) — Salt Lake City, Utah, August 22, 2019 — Patrick Byrne, chief executive of Overstock, leaves. As announced by Overstock.com Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Thursday, August 22, 2019, Patrick M. Byrne leaves his post as Chief Executive Officer at the online home goods retailer after almost 20 years in the role, effective immediately.

It is the end of an era.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, the average tenure of the CEOs who announced their departure over the past 12 months was 7.3 years, according to data compiled by exechange. On an accumulated basis, around 9% of the CEOs who announced their departure over the past 12 months left their posts after more than 15 years.

Patrick Byrne’s duties as CEO will be taken over in the interim by Jonathan E. Johnson, currently President of Medici Ventures, as Interim Chief Executive Officer.

“For the good of the firm, I am in the sad position of having to sever ties with Overstock”

A reason for Patrick Byrne’s departure from the CEO post was not explicitly provided. Patrick M. Byrne said in a letter to shareholders: “In July I came forward to a small set of journalists regarding my involvement in certain government matters. Doing so was not my first choice, but I was reminded of the damage done to our nation for three years and felt my duty as a citizen precluded me from staying silent any longer. So, I came forward in as carefully and well-managed fashion as I could. The news that I shared is bubbling (however haphazardly) into the public. Though patriotic Americans are writing me in support, my presence may affect and complicate all manner of business relationships, from insurability to strategic discussions regarding our retail business. Thus, while I believe that I did what was necessary for the good of the country, for the good of the firm, I am in the sad position of having to sever ties with Overstock, both as CEO and board member, effective Thursday August 22.”

Precise information regarding Patrick Byrne’s future plans was not immediately available.


Overstock said: “Allison Abraham, the Chair of Overstock.com, Inc.’s (NASDAQ:OSTK) Board of Directors, announces the appointment of Mr. Jonathan E. Johnson III as its Interim Chief Executive Officer and Dr. Kamelia Aryafar as member of the Board of Directors in the wake of the resignation of Dr. Patrick M. Byrne as CEO and member of the Board.”

Overstock further said: “On August 22, 2019, Overstock.com, Inc. (“Overstock”) announced the resignation of Patrick M. Byrne as Overstock’s Chief Executive Officer and a member of its Board of Directors (the “Board”), effective as of August 22, 2019.”

Share price decline

The announcement follows a decline in Overstock.com, Inc.’s share price of 77% since January 2018.

In the position of CEO since 1999

Patrick Byrne became CEO of the Company in October 1999.

Patrick M. Byrne has served as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer (principal executive officer) and as a Director since 1999, President since May 2018, and as Chairman of the Board of Directors from 2001 through 2005 and 2006 through 2014.

Byrne also served as the Chief Executive Officer of tZERO, a subsidiary of Overstock, from July 2015 through May 2018 and also has served as Co-chairman of the Board of Directors for tZERO since October 2017.

Byrne founded Overstock in 1999.

From 1994 to the present, Byrne has served as a Manager of the Haverford Group, an investment company and an affiliate of Overstock.

Byrne holds a bachelor’s degree in Chinese studies from Dartmouth College, a master’s degree from Cambridge University as a Marshall Scholar, and a doctorate in philosophy from Stanford University.

Push-out Score determined

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange gauges the pressure surrounding the management change on a scale of 0 to 10.

exechange reached out to Overstock and offered the company the opportunity to comment on the score.

Read the full story in the exechange report 34.2019 ($).