- Oprah Winfrey owns 10% of Weight Watchers’ stock, with options to grow that position to 15%.
- She’s made a net $US300 million on the investment since late 2015, as the stock has surged almost 700%.
Weight Watchers shareholders rejoiced on Tuesday as the company’s stock surged as much as 22%. But no one had more to celebrate than Oprah Winfrey.
The TV superstar and media mogul owns roughly 10% of the company’s stock after making a huge investment back in late 2015, and it’s paid off handsomely. Including the most recent share spike, Winfrey’s total profit from the Weight Watchers bet now sits at a whopping $US300 million, according to data compiled by Craig Giamonna of Bloomberg News.
At the root of the most recent stock increase was a stellar third-quarter earnings report, which saw the company beat analyst profit estimates and boost its full-year earnings forecast.
On the heels of Weight Watchers’ success, it’s clear that the massive profits reaped by Winfrey are fully deserved, considering how much her presence in ad campaigns has boosted sales and brand visibility. And she’ll appear in more ads during the ever-important winter season, CEO Mindy Grossman said on the earnings call.
Keep in mind that it was Winfrey’s initial investment in the company that kickstarted a resurgence in stock strength. When she first bought into Weight Watchers, it was trading below $US7 per share, but then doubled in a single trading session. Its stock has since climbed 674%, including almost 400% in 2017 alone.
And since Winfrey also owns options that could increase her stake in the company to 15%, she could see an even bigger windfall of profits if she elects to exercise them. Including the initial investment of $US43 million, her full stake is now worth more than $US500 million.
Not bad at all for a side investment.