Looking at Funcom’s track record for the past year, it just has not been a good run. The developer of the MMO The Secret World has suffered layoffs, poor sales, and is continually missing release dates for promised content. The layoffs even led to the lead designer leaving the company, and the developer’s CEO stepped down the day before their new MMO launched.
That’s where the latest kicker comes in.
While The Secret World remains quite an interesting game it’s not keeping the attention of players. What has gotten some attention, however, is the situation surrounding the CEO stepping down before the game’s release. The Escapist has reported that before Trond Aas changed his position within the company on July 2nd from CEO to “strategic advisor” and chief strategy officer, he then became able to sell off his Funcom shares. Once this went into effect he immediately set out to get rid of 1.5 million of those shares but was only able sell 650,000.
When Aas changed roles back in July the Funcom stock was at $17.60 a share, and that’s not too bad. As of yesterday the stock sat at around $2.17 a share. The drop in price has been a bit more than substantial, and Funcom is tanking right about now. Since this all happened Norwegian authorities are looking into investigating allegations against Aas.
These allegations put Aas at the center of an inside trading job. Maybe he knew how the company’s new MMO would shape up? Perhaps there was a group of insiders who put together a plan? Right now that’s unknown, but what’s for sure is that none of the coverage nor allegations are helping either The Secret World or Funcom.