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Oprah Winfrey made about $45 million in the stock market on Monday simply for revealing she bought shares of Weight Watchers International.
The revelation that she purchased newly issued stock that will represent 10 percent of the outstanding shares in the dieting service for $6.79 apiece caused the stock to spike 105 percent, closing Monday at $13.92.
The value of Winfrey’s $43.2 million investment, therefore, more than doubled to about $88.6 million, not even taking into account that she also will be given options for an additional 5 percent stake in the company, though Weight Watchers didn’t say exactly when she’d be issued those options.
Not that Winfrey needs the additional cash flow, given that she’s worth an estimated $3 billion, but the media mogul apparently is a believer in the product.
“Weight Watchers has given me the tools to begin to make the lasting shift that I and so many of us who are struggling with weight have longed for,” Winfrey said Monday.
Winfrey also said Monday she will join the Weight Watchers board of directors and she’ll act as an adviser to the company, which was founded in a New York basement in 1963.
In announcing Winfrey’s new role and ownership stake, Weight Watchers added that: “Winfrey has joined the program and will candidly share her experiences and perspective along the way.”
News of Winfrey’s involvement in the company not only caused the stock to double in value on Monday, it also caused massive activity, with 71.2 million shares trading hands, 70 times more volume than normal.
Weight Watchers is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol, WTW.
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