Skip to main content

Patrick Byrne Absent From Third Quarter Earnings Call

Updated on 11/12/10 to include other blog feedback

Yesterday, (NASDAQ: OSTK) finally held its scheduled conference call with analysts to discuss the company's dismal third quarter earnings report which was released last Friday. On that day, stunned investors and reported a Q3 2010 $3.381 million loss or a loss of $0.15 per share compared to a Q3 2009 reported loss of $1.379 million or a loss of $0.06 per share. It was the second consecutive quarter that failed to meet Wall Street analysts’ consensus expectations for earnings.

However, instead of facing the music, CEO Patrick Byrne was absent from the call. According to company President Jonathan Johnson:
Patrick Byrne, he is not with us today. He came in this morning and took ill and is unable to be on the call and he apologizes. So Steve and I will go forward without him.
The onset of such sudden illnesses is common among the targets of an SEC investigation, like Patrick Byrne.

Back in the Crazy Eddie days, it was known as "SEC induced sudden illness syndrome" or by the short acronym SIS. Common symptoms include panic attacks, headaches, nausea, cold sweats, trembling, stomach pains, vomiting, and worst of all, diarrhea. At least the weight loss isn't so bad. However, the SEC commonly refers to anyone suffering from SIS as a SISsy.

Patrick Byrne self-medicating through intoxication
Patrick Byrne could have avoided all of this. He should have listened to me in early 2009 about certain GAAP violations identified in my blog and promptly taken steps to correct them. However, his arrogance and vanity got in the way of rationality and reason.

Instead, Patrick Byrne publicly disparaged me, sent his paid stalker Judd Bagley to interfere with my divorce, and even had Bagley pretext my children and relatives on Facebook after I pointed out the company's accounting violations. Some of those relatives stalked by Bagley were minor children.

Patrick Byrne fired Grant Thornton as's auditors after they agreed with me and recommended that the company correct those GAAP violations. Eventually, the SEC started investigating and the company was forced to restate its financial reports for the third time in three years.

More recently, I've raised questions of possible illegal insider trading by Patrick Byrne. Last May, Byrne's 100% controlled High Plains Investments LLC dumped 140,000 company shares at an average price of $22.11 per share and collected over $3 million in proceeds, according to SEC filings.

After Byrne sold his stock, Information Week interviewed him and reported that
...can roll up its profit-and-loss position in two hours, giving executives accurate, up-to-date insight for fast decision-making.
However, investors were not privy to such timely inside information.

Both before and after Byrne sold his stock, he hyped's prospects by leading investors to believe that the company would break even in its second and third quarters and beat Wall Street analysts' consensus expectations for Q2 and Q3 2010. However, in both quarters stunned investors by losing money and failing to meet analysts' expectations for financial performance.

In the time since Byrne sold his stock,’s shares have dropped about 41% in market value from his average selling price of $22.11 per share to $13.02 yesterday. The company’s market capitalization (shares outstanding multiplied by market price per share) has dropped approximately $200 million since Byrne sold his shares.

I have no doubt that Patrick Byrne will play deaf and dumb or what the SEC refers to as "D & D" when the investigators ask him what he knew when he sold his stock and profited handsomely off the backs of unsuspecting investors. Even a "SISsy" like Byrne will eventually have to face the music.

Written by,

Sam E. Antar

Recommended Reading

November 11, 2010: William K. Wolfrum Chronicles - Has Patrick Byrne been abducted by Russian Mobsters? Sith Lords? Sure, why not? by William K. Wolfrum

Of course, while all these abduction and SIS scenarios are likely true – even simultaneously in the fevered mind of Byrne – it’s probably more likely that his lawyers, his Daddy, and others have him under orders to keep his mouth shut. Because you never know what Patrick Byrne will say next, except for the fact it won’t be the truth about how he’s criminally mismanaged
November 8, 2010: The - 3 Ways companies Try to Trick Investors by Gary Weiss
In contrast to previous quarters when the company had something positive to say, Overstock's usually hyperactive corporate PR machinery, ranging from Twitter feeds to a Facebook page to a PR website personally financed by the CEO -- all were silent.

Overstock's no-release earnings announcement was the latest example of how companies nowadays manage the bad news that has been showering over corporate America in abundance. Overstock's approach was perhaps more extreme than most, but it was an example of one of the common ways company's handle bad news. They ignore it.

I am a convicted felon and a former CPA. As the criminal CFO of Crazy Eddie, I helped my cousin Eddie Antar and other members of his family mastermind one of the largest securities frauds uncovered during the 1980's. I committed my crimes in cold-blood for fun and profit, and simply because I could.

If it weren't for the heroic efforts of the FBI, SEC, Postal Inspector's Office, US Attorney's Office, and class action plaintiff's lawyers who investigated, prosecuted, and sued me, I would still be the criminal CFO of Crazy Eddie today.

There is a saying, "It takes one to know one." Today, I work very closely with the FBI, IRS, SEC, Justice Department, and other federal and state law enforcement agencies in training them to identify and catch white-collar criminals. Often, I refer cases to them

For example, I exposed GAAP violations by which caused the company to restate its financial reports for the third time in three years. The SEC is now investigating and its CEO Patrick Byrne for securities law violations (Details here, here, and here).

I do not seek or want forgiveness for my vicious crimes from my victims. I plan on frying in hell with other white-collar criminals for a very long time.

I do not own any securities long or short. My investigation of that company is a freebie for securities regulators to get me into heaven, though I doubt I will ever get there. My past sins are unforgivable.


MsCFaith said…
Is he really sick or just playing it all up?

Loan blog

Popular Posts

Did a Clever SEC Bait Goldman Sachs into Compounding Its Legal Problems With the "Kiss of Death" Message?

Updated: At 3:48 AM ET 04/20/2010 on bottom

The Kiss of Death

In filing its lawsuit against Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) on a Friday, the Securities and Exchange Commission sent what I call the "kiss of death" message to the embattled company. In other words, the SEC wanted to stick it to Goldman Sachs and Fabrice Tourre, the Executive Director of Goldman Sachs International, who is also a defendant in the complaint. While the SEC as a practice does inform target companies and individuals of an impending enforcement action, it does not always tell them exactly when such an action will be filed.

Apparently, the SEC filed its lawsuit without giving Goldman Sachs the heads up that it was planning to file it that day. Business Insider observed that Goldman Sachs was clearly unprepared to respond to the complaint as news of the lawsuit dominated the headlines all day. Goldman issued a short denial around noon and issued an extensive denial late in the afternoon, after most people had … CEO Patrick Byrne Sleeps With a Gun

In numerous blog posts in the past, and in widespread media coverage, evidence has accumulated for years that CEO (NASDAQ: OSTK) Patrick Byrne has shown signs of being mentally unbalanced and paranoid.

Byrne has blamed his company's financial woes on an unnamed "Sith Lord." He hired paid goons to stalk his real and imagined adversaries and to write lengthy conspiracy theories on the Internet. Byrne has close ties with Bo Gritz. The Anti-Defamation League lists Bo Gritz as a far-right extremist with “extensive connections to both white supremacists and anti-government groups and leaders.”

Patrick Byrne's infamous temper tantrums when he doesn’t get want he wants are well documented too. He made obscene and misogynistic comments to a female reporter. He suggested that she gave “blowjobs” to Goldman Sachs traders. He suggested that a male reporter “Sucks It Likes He’s Paying the Rent.” An independent research analyst was told that “You deserve to be whippe…

Nature's Sunshine Products, Willbros Group, Cal Dive International, and BSQUARE Violate S.E.C. Rules on Calculating EBITDA

Nature’s Sunshine Products (NASDAQ: NATR), Willbros Group (NYSE: WG), Cal Dive International (NYSE: DVR), and BSQUARE (NASDAQ: BSQR) have recently issued earnings reports which include a calculation of EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) that apparently does not comply with Securities and Exchange Commission interpretations for Regulation G governing such non-GAAP financial measures. In each case, their erroneous EBITDA calculations have enabled them to significantly distort their financial performance by erroneously reporting a positive EBITDA, when they should have reported a negative EBITDA in the latest quarter.

How EBITDA is supposed to be calculated under Regulation G

According to the S.E.C. Compliance & Disclosure Interpretations, EBITDA is defined under Regulation G as net income (not operating income) before net interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization. See below:

Question 103.01Question: Exchange Act Release No. 47226 describes E…

InterOil, John Thomas Financial, and Clarion Finanz: Anatomy of a Stock Market Manipulation Scheme

In this blog post, I will provide evidence of what I believe is a stock market manipulation scheme involving InterOil (NYSE: IOC), John Thomas Financial, and Clarion Finanz AG. I believe that InterOil with the assistance of Clarion Finanz concealed John Thomas Financial’s involvement in helping it raise $95 million through a private placement of convertible debt securities.

Clarion Finanz acted as a buffer between InterOil and John Thomas Financial to help InterOil hide John Thomas Financial's role in raising funds. Afterwards, InterOil filed false and misleading reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission in an effort to conceal John Thomas Financial’s role in helping the company raise $95 million in convertible debt.

Carl Caserta, who in 1991 was barred by the Securities and Exchange Commission from “association with any broker, dealer, or investment advisor” played a role in helping InterOil use John Thomas Financial to obtain funds from investors. InterOil, John Thoma…

Class Action Complaint against Amedisys uses Sarbanes-Oxley Act Corporate Governance Provisions to Battle Alleged Corporate Malfeasance

Updated at bottom of article

Last week, Pomerantz Haudek Grossman & Gross LLP filed a class action lawsuit against Amedisys (NASDAQ: AMED) charging the company, its CEO William F. Borne and its CFO Dale E. Redman with securities fraud.  In the next few days, Bernstein Liebhard LLP and Finkelstein Thompson LLP filed similar class action lawsuits against the company. The lawsuits allege that Amedisys abused Medicare's reimbursement system for at-home therapy care based on a compelling analysis of company revenues in an April 27 Wall Street Journal article.

In addition, the lawsuits innovatively utilize a provision under Section 406 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act 2002 which provides a back-door way for investors to force ethical corporate governance and sue public companies for malfeasance. That provision requires Senior Financial Officers, such as the CEO and CFO of public companies, to abide by a strict code of ethics which broadly defines corporate malfeasance and effectively makes…