GameStop More Than Doubles In Late Day Trading, Continues to Surge After-Hours

GameStop’s tremendous surge was accompanied by a late afternoon boost to fellow Reddit favorites AMC, Blackberry and Tilray.
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Shares of GameStop  (GME) - Get Report unexpectedly surged more than 100% in the final hour of trading Wednesday after spending most of the day in a narrow range, and continued rising after-hours.

The gaming retailer at the center of the Reddit-fueled buying frenzy last month rose almost 104% on the day to $91.70, and was trading up another 67% at last check after-hours on Wednesday.

GameStop’s surge was accompanied by a late-afternoon boost to fellow Reddit favorites AMC  (AMC) - Get Report, which saw its stock rise more than 18% to $9.11 during the day; Blackberry  (BB) - Get Report, which was up 8.9%, and Tilray  (TLRY) - Get Report, which rose 12.9%. 

In the morning, GameStop announced that its Chief Financial Officer, Jim Bell, would be departing the company after less than two years on the job with a payout worth nearly $30 million.

The company said Bell’s resignation from the company would be effective March 26. Bell will get $15.8 million when he departs, and could earn millions more from equity in coming years if activist investor Ryan Cohen can pull off a turnaround of GameStop.

Bell’s contract entitles him to $2.8 million in severance and an immediate payout of restricted shares worth $13 million when he departs, according to regulatory filings and calculations by Bloomberg.

Bell also holds a couple of equity awards that are tied to goals spanning several years. Filings show he could collect at least 300,000 shares, depending on how the company does. They were worth $13.8 million as of Tuesday’s close, and more than twice that as of Wednesday's close. 

Cohen, the billionaire co-founder of pet-supply company Chewy, has pushed GameStop to rethink its business to become a more digitally focused company. He’s the company’s second-largest shareholder and won three board seats in January through an agreement struck between GameStop and his activist fund, RC Ventures. 

Shares of GameStop have been incredibly volatile recently, but are still up more than 491% overall year to date.