Overstock

  • 03 Aug 2006 at 8:51 AM
  • Overstock

Google Cache Means Your Deep Thoughts Are Forever

patrickbyrne.jpgOverstock.com’s CEO Patrick Byrne was one of the few CEO’s we know who regularly wrote essays on the internet. And by “essays” we mean defensive, semi-paranoid rants attacking short sellers and his company’s detractors. Sometimes this stuff got so batshit insane overheated that some readers thought it was a prank or doubted Byrne was actually writing the stuff.
Now it’s gone. The entire section “Deep Thoughts by Patrick Byrne” seems to been erased from Overstock’s website. (And we never got to find out whether the section was in fact named for Jack Handy’s “Deep Thoughts” segments on Saturday Night Live.)
Fortunately, we’ll always have the Google cache. [Update: As our readers have pointed out, the cache sadly just gives evidence of how many deep thoughts Byrne had, but not the actual posts themselves.]
Byrne Nukes His Own Immortal Words [Gary Weiss]
Update: We hadn’t seen this before so maybe it is the replacement for Deep Thoughts. The Patrick Byrne blog!

patrickbyrne.jpgGary Weiss, author of Wall Street Versus America, listened to the Overstock.Com conference call so you wouldn’t have to. Not surprisingly, CEO Patrick Byrne found time to talk about things other than his company’s $0.78 per share net loss in the second quarter. Things like dastardly short-sellers and how shareholders might prevent them from pushing the value of their stock down even further.
We’ll leave the details for you to read by clicking through to Gary’s blog on the link below. But if you’re as lazy as we are on Fridays, you might appreciate skipping right to the conclusion.

Byrne’s gambit won’t work, by the way. History has proven that the only proven method of pushing up the share prices of bad companies is that they stop being bad. And Byrne just hasn’t figured out a way to do that.

Burn! (As DealBreaker cub reporter Bess Levin likes to say.)

Byrne’s Latest Gambit
[Gary-Weiss.Com]

OSTK Directors: Board or Bored?

Jeff Matthews asks a completely reasonable question: what is going on with the Board of Directors of Overstock.Com? At least a few of the directors seem to be sensible, well-regarded folks. Are they celebrating yesterday’s subpoena news with CEO Patrick Byrne? Or are they just bored with being directors and not really paying attention?
I cannot imagine that being a director at Overstock.Com is boring. To the contrary, shouldn’t being a lightsaber wielding jedi preparing to do battle with the Sith be just about the best job ever?
I mean, what else could a director ask for? Other than a Harley, obviously.
Bored of Directors? [JeffMatthewsIsNotMakingThisUp]

  • 28 Apr 2006 at 11:02 AM
  • Overstock

LiveBlogging Overstock’s Conference Call…

dvader.jpgRECAP: The OSTK call was less eventful than what we’ve come to expect from Byrne, but there was the usual hint of conspiracy and gratuitous media bashing (see Roddy Boyd, swipes at; Wall Street Journal, accusations of fabricated quotes). Byrne also says that one of the “big three” bulge bracket banks has been calling up some of OSTK’s partners and telling them to drop OSTK. And guidance: next quarter will look exactly like this quarter.
11:59 – final comments. Jason: we stumbled and we know we stumbled and don’t let anything we say make you think we’re making excuses.. but in the long run it might be a good thing for the business… when we had the debacle we had, replacing all of our systems this year, and we shrunk a lot… it’s given us time to take a deep breath and harden our systems. [our core business] is getting a lot of attention. As bad as the systems got, i think the core shopping business, as far as somebody orders a product and they get it on time, i’m not sure our business has ever been better… i think investors should be pleased and in the next 6 months to a year, you’ll see a big difference in our financial performance. Byrne – to me this is all a function of bad decisions i made in the first half of ’05, both in that they were belated, and that… we stumbled… To jason’s point… we couldn’t have gotten better or more refined looks at inventory or more refined looks at marketing… travel beat budget for the quarter, auctions was just a little behind budget…we don’t really have any great new businesses planned. we’re just refining what we have… i’m sure you welcome having Jason back to provide adult supervision… Expect that same thing for one more quarter..

Read more »

  • 29 Mar 2006 at 3:41 PM
  • Companies

Write-Offs: 03.29.06

$$$ Credit where credit’s due: we all have Overstock’s Patrick Byrne to thank for making conference calls fun again. But let’s face it: they’re even better when you record them and have them read by monkeys in wigs and sunglasses. (See also here and here.)
$$$ What’s the first result when you type “finance” into Google? Uh… Yahoo! Someone’s getting fiiiiiired. [via Going Private]
$$$ The 80,000 volt electric briefcase. Where the hell was this when we were dropping off piles of cash on behalf of Equatoguinean dictators in Dupont Circle for Riggs Bank in ’04? Now they tell us! [via BoingBoing]
$$$ The first rule of Hedge Fund Polo Club is that no one talks about Hedge Fund Polo Club.