Sea’s group president, Nick Nash, who helped take the Tencent-backed tech group public final yr, is to step down, the corporate stated after unveiling a greater than doubling of web losses to $561.17m within the yr to end-December.
Singapore-based Sea, which operates a Tencent-like mannequin encompassing gaming, ecommerce and funds throughout south-east Asia and Taiwan, raised greater than $1bn when it listed on the New York Inventory Change final October. But it surely has did not match its backer with regards to profitability and shares have fallen by nearly a fifth since then to $12.26.
Whereas Tencent has grown to be China’s biggest tech company with a market capitalisation in extra of $500bn, Sea illustrates the draw back of constructing a diversified tech group in a area the place competitors — each home and worldwide gamers similar to Google’s YouTube and Amazon — battle for market share.
Within the yr to end-December Sea’s revenues rose 20 per cent to $414.19m, half the speed at which the price of gross sales elevated.
The fourth quarter confirmed no let-up in advertising and different prices, which rose 60 per cent versus a 41 per cent enchancment in revenues to $124.6m. Internet loss for the quarter was $263.14m, ballooning from $72.24m in the identical interval in 2016.
Forrest Li, chairman and group chief government, stated the corporate — previously generally known as Garena — made “wonderful progress” throughout all companies. He highlighted extra environment friendly gross sales and advertising spend on ecommerce, now eight.three per cent of gross merchandise quantity as in opposition to 11 per cent in 2016.
Sea stated that Mr Nash, 39, plans to retire on the finish of this yr and from now until then will proceed to “advise” the chief government on the corporate’s “long-term strategic priorities”.
The previous McKinsey guide is just not being changed as group president; as an alternative, his duties will fall to Mr Li, additionally the founding father of the corporate. Mr Nash’s place on the board will cross to Tony Tianyu Hou, group chief monetary officer.
Sea additionally expanded its incentive plan, rising the variety of shares to fulfil choices handed out to administration and workers, from 53m to 83m shares. After that it’s going to elevate the pool of shares by 5 per cent of extraordinary shares in challenge every year from 2019 to 2022.
Sea stated the will increase had been designed to “make fairness grants to its administration crew and different workers, in order to raised entice world skills and extra intently align the curiosity of its workers with the corporate and its shareholders”.