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Zillow Group Inc (NASDAQ:Z) Shares Sink As CFO Drops Out

zillow inc google inc buyout rumor

Zillow Group Inc (NASDAQ:Z) shares were down strongly on Friday’s pre-market after the firm’s CFO Chad Cohen revealed that he would leave the firm. The executive, who joined Zillow in 2006, is leaving at a delicate time for the firm. Those invested appear to think that now might be the time to follow Cohen out of Zillow.

zillow inc google inc buyout rumor

At time of writing shares in Zillow Group Inc were down 3.82 percent to $82 on this morning’s pre-market. This morning’s losses come on the back of a fall in share value over the last month. In the last 30 days shares in the firm have lost more than 20 percent of their value. Over the last twelve months shares are down by more than 40 percent.

Zillow CFO says Goodbye

Mr. Cohen has been CFO at Zillow since 2011. He lead the firm through its IPO and, more recently, though its massive merger with Trulia. The progress of that merger, and its utility in a changing property market, is a subject of contention among investors. No reason was given by Mr. Cohen for his decision to leave the firm.

Bob Peck of SunTrust Robinson, speaking to Benzinga about the departure of the executive, said that it was unlikely that Mr. Cohen had been let go from his position. He added that it’s unlikely that Mr. Cohen’s choice was based on anything less than proper in the firm’s accounts.

Though he did not give any new info on why Mr. Cohen might have decided to leave Zillow, Mr. Peck did say that he expected the exec to have plenty of offers throughout the tech world if he is looking for another job outside of Zillow.

Zillow looks to the future

Zillow has faced its share of problems in recent weeks, and those issues have been compounded by a poor overall market. Shares in the firm briefly spiked after rumors that Google would buy it emerged on Wall Street but,unless Mr. Cohen is set to be replaced by Larry Page on the firm’s executive team, there’s no momentum behind those stories any longer.

On June 16 Oppenheimer analyst Jason Helfstein said that Zillow’s results through the rest of 2015 were in doubt as the firm’s traffic continued to be under pressure.

Mr. Peck says that most of the brunt of the Trulia buyout will be borne in the second and third quarter of 2015. Zillow is set to reveal its second quarter numbers at the end of July or early August. The reveal will likely come before August 7, the date that Mr. Cohen is set to leave the firm for good on.

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