Last week, Mail.Ru Group Ltd, an email-to-social networking company, sold all of its remaining shares in Groupon (GRPN) and Zynga (ZNGA), according to corporate spokeswoman Ksenia Chabenenko Monday morning. At one point, the Russia-based company owned a 4.12 percent stake in daily deal site Groupon and 1.17 percent of game maker Zynga. Meanwhile, Mail.Ru also shed shares of Facebook (FB), taking its holdings to 0.52 percent from 1.34 percent.
Matthew Hammond, managing director at Mail.Ru, said last week that the company is considering using the proceeds to pay a special dividend to Mail.Ru shareholders and to buy a larger stake in social network Vkontake. Mail.Ru trades on the London Stock Exchange under the ticker “MAIL.”
All three companies sit near all-time lows and investors are grabbing shares as part of a broad market rally Monday morning.
Shares of GRPN are up more than 5 percent; ZNGA is up about 1.5 percent; and FB is trading up a modest 0.5 percent after rising about 20 percent in the previous three trading sessions.
Zynga IPO’d in December of 2011 at $11 and have since fallen to the area of $2 each. Groupon made its public debut a month earlier than Zynga at $26 per share and has tumbled to about $3 per share. Facebook made its famous appearance on Wall Street in May at about $38 per share and had lost more than half its value before bouncing last week to nearly $24 per share.
Zynga has been struggling to retain market and executives (more than a half dozen have quit recently). The world’s largest online game maker reported last Wednesday that its Treasurer Mike Gupta is departing to take the roles of vice president of corporate finance and treasurer at Twitter Inc. David Wehner, former chief financial officer at Zynga, resigned just days earlier to take a job at Facebook Inc., although the exact position was not disclosed.
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