Bill Ackman has potentially lost a $400 million unrealized loss on the Netflix bet he made in January 2022.
Netflix shares plunged as much as 37% on Wednesday, after the firm reported a slowdown in revenue growth last quarter, and forecasted its subscriber base would shrink by 2 million users to below 220 million this quarter.
Ackman’s Pershing Square purchased 3.1 million Netflix shares in just four trading days in late January, securing a 0.7% stake worth $1.1 billion at the time. The streaming service stock’s dramatic decline has deleted the value of the hedge fund’s position to about $700 million today — a roughly 36% tumble.
Pershing Square first purchased Netflix shares on January 21. It was the day when the stock plunged 25% due to a weak subscriber growth forecast, alongside a broader sell-off of technology stocks in the face of surging inflation and rising interest rates.
Ackman tweeted in January that he was “delighted” to finally have a chance to invest in Netflix at an attractive valuation.
On Netflix’s earnings call, Hastings and his team blamed the company’s slowing growth on account sharing and fierce competition from newer services such as Disney Plus and HBO Max. They’re now “open” to offering subscribers a lower-tiered option that supports ads.