"Time is standing still" for Fossil (FOSL) , as the trendy watchmaker finds itself in a black hole, from which there's no return, wrote Macquarie analysts in a new note.
On Monday, the company released a Form 4, which is a Securities and Exchange Commission filing required when there's a material change in the company insiders' holders. What prompted the filing was that Fossil CEO Kosta Kartsotis sold 520,000 shares of the company's stock on Thursday and Friday, which follows the divestiture of 1.074 million shares on May 30. Those sales leave the CEO with 4.426 million shares, wrote the analysts.
"In Time's Up: 10K Concerns, we outlined our initial concern following the 10K release that the CEO pledged 3.8MM shares in February at roughly $19/share equating to $73MM," wrote Macquarie analysts Laurent Vasilescu and Dan Isaacson in the note. "With the shares now at about $11, we estimate the pledge is in the red by $30MM. (3.8M shares at $19/share minus 3.8M shares at 11). It is our understanding that the pledged shares are with a bank and the bank can choose to sell these shares."
Macquarie analysts added with the stock trading at about $11 since the end of May, they had outlined in a previous note that Kartsotis would be forced to sell his shares to make up for the lower value of the collateral. The proceeds from the May 30 sale of $12.1 million likely would need to be used for an estimated $30 million shortfall, wrote the analysts.
These stock divestitures are the latest blow to Fossil, which has taken a hit every time a major department store closes its doors because it loses a place to sell its watches. The shift to smartwatches is a third major problem for Fossil. In March, Moody's Investors Service downgraded Fossil's secured credit facilities, citing weakness in its traditional watch segment. In its downgrade, Moody's said Fossil will have trouble competing against Fitbit (FIT) , which is alarming considering the rival has also experienced a drop in demand for its fitness trackers due to competition from Apple's (AAPL) smartwatch.
In its fourth quarter, Fossil said it would make a "big bet" on tech wear to offset its declining traditional watch sales. In 2016, Fossil launched 100 wearables for Alphabet's Google (GOOGL) Android Wear 2.0 platform. Katsotsis said then that it planned to launch a hybrid smartwatch, with touchscreen dials.
Fossil could not immediately be reached for comment.
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