Unity Executives Sell Thousands Of Shares Ahead Of The Highly Controversial Fees Announcement

This may allude to insider trading.

Story Highlights

  • Unity executives could likely be a part of insider trading. The company has announced a major change that caused a lot of backlash from the devs. The bosses sold thousands of shares before the reveal.
  • The CEO of the company, John Riccitiello, sold 2,000 shares on September 6, six days before the reveal. He sold a total of 50,610 shares this year alone and bought none. Many other bosses have sold shares.
  • The President of Growth, Tomer Bar-Zeev, sold over 37,500 shares on September 1, which is around $1.4m. The board director, Shlomo Dovrat, also sold 68,454 shares on August 30 for roughly $2.5m.
  • There has been a lot of outrage from the devs, causing the shares of the company to fall entirely. The bosses may have sold shares due to the inside knowledge. Unity has yet to comment on the matter. 

A huge tidal wave of disdain has directly struck the heart of the Unity engine. The company has made quite a polemical decision that has shifted the opinions of the devs and gamers completely within the span of a few hours. It wants to charge devs with a fee each time a game using the engine is downloaded. As a result, the stocks of the company have plunged, but it seems like the executives were already prepared for it.

An earlier report by Guru Focus suggests that several Unity executives have sold thousands of shares of the company’s stock weeks ahead of the announcement. The CEO of the company, John Riccitiello, sold 2,000 shares on September 6, six days before the reveal. The source further confirms that the huge swaths of share sales follow an alarming trend. The CEO has rolled over a total of 50,610 shares this year alone and bought none.

Other Interesting Reads:

The CEO is far from the only boss who has partaken in such an endeavor. A slew of other executives and the board of directors have sold shares of the company in the past few weeks. The President of Growth, Tomer Bar-Zeev, shifted over 37,500 shares on September 1, which roughly equated to $1.4 million. The board director Shlomo Dovrat also sold 68,454 shares on August 30 for around $2.5 million, as per the data on Nasdaq.

The new fee introduced by Unity has caused a huge outrage in the gaming industry. The fees will be charged on an install basis only after a certain revenue and install threshold have been met. The team has tried to elaborate on the specifics of the new change. The company Unity specified that the fee would only be allotted after a title makes $200,000 per single year and has at least 200,000-lifetime game installs. 

However, the clarification by Unity has not calmed the growing disdain for the popular game engine. The outrage has only increased since then, and many devs have participated in showing their dislike for the new change. The devs are considering moving on to other game engines; some are simply making fun of the matter. The Cult of the Lamb team posted a joke about deleting its game altogether.

Overall, all the proof seems to imply that insider trading has taken place. However, it remains unclear whether selling thousands of shares before the reveal would cause legal troubles for the Unity executives and board of directors. The community has found it really shady for the higher-ups to indulge in the alleged insider trading before making the announcement for bringing the hated change. Unity has yet to elaborate on the matter.

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Guru Focus

Shameer Sarfaraz is a Senior News Writer on eXputer who loves to keep up with the gaming and entertainment industries devoutly. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science and several years of experience reporting on games. Besides his passion for breaking news stories, Shahmeer loves spending his leisure time farming away in Stardew Valley. VGC, IGN, GameSpot, Game Rant, TheGamer, GamingBolt, The Verge, NME, Metro, Dot Esports, GameByte, Kotaku Australia, PC Gamer, and more have cited his articles.

Experience: 4+ Years || Education: Bachelor in Computer Science.

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