NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK
Hedge fund Black-and-White Capital urged Etsy, Inc., in which it owns a two percent stake, to consider selling the company. After private talks, Black-and-White went public with its recommendations, faulting the “bloated” company’s “ill-advised spending” and its website’s “horrendous search functionality” among other issues. Since its initial public offering two years ago, the online marketplace for handmade goods has seen corporate shares lose 30 percent of their value. Falling 1.5 percent short of its $98.4 million second-quarter revenue target, the company is responding to criticism. Etsy announced it will cut 80 jobs, Chair Chad Dickerson is surrendering his CEO hat to board member Josh Silverman, and Chief Technology Officer John Allspaw is leaving the company. Etsy is hesitant to appear too financially-driven, as it must uphold commitments to community, the environment, employees, consumers, and suppliers to retain its B-Corporation status. It will continue to pay employees at least 40 percent more than the local living wage and cover the lion’s share of healthcare premiums.