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Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne resigns

August 22, 2019, 12:16PM EDT

Overstock, the cryptocurrency-related e-commerce retail firm, has announced the resignation of its longtime CEO and founder Patrick M. Byrne. In a statement from Byrne, the embattled founder states "In July I came forward to a small set of journalists regarding my involvement in certain government matters. Doing so was not my first choice, but I was reminded of the damage done to our nation for three years and felt my duty as a citizen precluded me from staying silent any longer....The news that I shared is bubbling (however haphazardly) into the public," referring to his comments on the "Deep State" earlier this month.

Byrne adds that he is "in sad position of having to sever ties with Overstock, both as CEO and board member, effective Thursday August 22."

In his statement, Byrne also expressed his optimism for blockchain technology, adding that "the blockchain revolution will reshape key social institutions" and that Overstock's "blockchain progeny (Medici Land Governance, Bitt, and tZERO, respectively) are arguably the leading blockchain disruptors in existence."

The Overstock board has appointed Chairman Jonathan E. Johnson as the company's interim CEO.

Overstock shares saw a double-digit jump shortly after publication of the news.

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