Yeah1 loses almost half of its market cap after YouTube crisis

By Hung Le   March 14, 2019 | 05:55 am PT
Yeah1 loses almost half of its market cap after YouTube crisis
Yeah1’s shares began plummeting on March 4. Photo by Shutterstock/Poring
YEG shares of Vietnamese digital media giant Yeah1 Group has seen nine consecutive losing sessions since March 4.

That was the day that YouTube terminated its content hosting agreements with the group.

YEG shares closed at VND127,700 in Thursday afternoon's session, a drop of VND9,600 ($0.43) per share or 7 percent of the stock’s opening price. This comes up to only 52 percent of YEG’s trading price on March 1, which was VND245,000 ($11) per share.

This is the ninth consecutive losing session for the stock, the longest losing streak on main bourse Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange (HOSE) this year. However, while shareholders scramble to get rid of the stock, many are unable to sell when there are not enough matching buy orders.

For instance, while over five million YEG shares (sell orders) were put up for sale in Wednesday’s session, only 21,710 were matched with buy orders. On Tuesday, only 135,330 out of 2,173,140 sell orders were matched, of which 100,000 shares were bought by Yeah1’s chairman Nguyen Anh Nhuong Tong.

Tong currently holds 11.4 million YEG shares, equivalent to 37.41 percent of the company.

Currently, 80 percent of the company is owned by high net worth individuals, business leaders and foreign investment funds. Only about 20 percent of Yeah1 shares, approximately 60 million shares, are owned by small shareholders.

Yeah1’s shares began plummeting on March 4, when YouTube unilaterally terminated its content hosting agreement with all of the Vietnamese media giant’s subsidiaries following a policy infringement by a business unit partially controlled by Yeah1.

The media giant subsequently sold off a US-based subsidiary ScaleLab on Monday, only two months after it acquired it. ScaleLab is a firm that connects creators of video content and YouTube for a cut, generating revenue primarily from the streaming platform.

Founded in 2006, Yeah1 is Vietnam's largest MCN ecosystem, operating TV channels, movie studios, YouTube networks, and digital news.

It was also the first media company to go public, listing on the HOSE last June.

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