Shares of retailer-turned-cryptocurrency play Overstock.com plunge on share offering

  • Overstock.com shares plunge and are down more than 30 percent this year.
  • The e-commerce company is offering 4 million shares of new stock, underwritten by Guggenheim.
  • The company has moved into the cryptocurrency and blockchain space through its subsidiary tZero and is under investigation from the Securities and Exchange Commission.
An employee scans an order in the shipping area at the Overstock.com distribution center in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Ken James | Bloomberg | Getty Images
An employee scans an order in the shipping area at the Overstock.com distribution center in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Shares of Overstock.com fell more than 10 percent Tuesday after the company announced its intention to offer 4 million shares of new stock.

The e-commerce company said after the markets closed Monday it would issue the new common stock in an underwritten public offering. Guggenheim is the sole underwriter, and has the option to buy up to 600,000 additional shares in the offering within 30 days, Overstock.com said.

Overstock.com was trading at $39.75 on Tuesday morning, bringing the total stock offering to about $158.8 million. Shares are down by more than 37 percent this year.

The Salt Lake City-based online retailer is best known for selling products like furniture, home decor and jewelry. But the company has also moved into the blockchain and cryptocurrency space.

Overstock.com's subsidiary tZero said in late September it would form a joint venture to start a digital coin exchange. The company has also said it has a license for an alternative trading system through another acquisition.

The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the firm for its cryptocurrency-focused subsidiary's sale of digital tokens.

Overstock said that in February the SEC requested "certain documents related to the offering and the tokens in connection with its investigation," according to an 8-K filing with the commission.

The SEC has increased its scrutiny of sales of new digital tokens, or initial coin offerings, which have brought in $7 billion since 2016, according to data from financial research firm Autonomous Next.

Earlier in March, shares of Overstock.com dropped more than 15 percent after the company reported a sales decline and no significant progress on a potential sale of its retail arm to focus on its cryptocurrency-related business.