Revlon is joining the meme stock crowd as the cosmetics giant’s shares surge in over-the-counter trading despite the company’s bankruptcy filing last week.
The 90-year-old company filed for Chapter 11 on Thursday, only to see its shares soar by 91% the next day. They surged 62% on Tuesday and on Wednesday afternoon, Revlon’s shares rose by 50% to more than $9 a share.
“Investors are running up the stock, because they think Revlon will be taken over. They are looking at what happened with Hertz and want to get on the ground floor of a company that is going to be bought,” bankruptcy attorney Eric Snyder of Wilk Auslander told The Post.
Last week, business news channel ET Now reported that the Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries is interested in acquiring New York-based Revlon. Reliance lately has expanded into fashion and personal care space as it diversifies away from its mainstay oil business, according to Reuters.
Nevertheless, analysts say Revlon shares are a risky bet as the vast majority of companies that file for bankruptcy see their shares drop precipitously and are eventually delisted.
The Reddit crowd rushed into Hertz after its bankruptcy filing in June 2021, defying expectations that it would be wiped out in bankruptcy court. Trading in Hertz got so frenzied that then-SEC chairman Jay Clayton said on national television that he was concerned about the company’s plans to raise money by selling more potentially worthless stock.
Hertz buyers reaped an unexpected windfall because there was enormous demand for the company’s services since consumers had begun to travel again, experts say. Hertz also benefitted from the fact that it’s one of the largest sellers of used vehicles, which were in short supply at the time.
But Revlon, whose largest shareholder is billionaire Ron Perelman, doesn’t offer something that consumers can’t get elsewhere, which is partly the reason it found itself in bankruptcy court.
The nearly century-old company, led by Perelman’s daughter Debra Perelman, faces a bevy of new competition from the likes of Kylie Jenner and Rihanna and other celebrities whose social media following far surpassed anything Revlon has produced.
“Individual investors are ignoring the fundamentals of the company,” said Mathieu Champigny, chief executive of Industrial Color, a creative agency focused on the beauty industry.
Revlon’s massive $3.7 billion debt load was the “driving factor of the bankruptcy,” Champigny added. “At the end of the day, Revlon is a legacy company that has not been moving fast enough.”