Former Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy takes a 7.7% stake in Buzzfeed

Former Republican presidential candidate and biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy has bought a minority stake in Buzzfeed, the digital publisher that closed its media business last year.

The company's shares shot up more than 50% before the market opened on Wednesday.

Ramaswamy acquired a 7.7% stake in Buzzfeed late Tuesday, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Ramaswamy said in the filing that he believes Buzzfeed's stock is undervalued. He would like to speak with the company's directors and management.

Buzzfeed has struggled to maintain revenue since going public in 2021. Job cuts began in late 2022, with the company citing a poor digital advertising environment and announcing early last year that it would shutter its Pulitzer Prize-winning digital media channel BuzzFeed. News.

The parent company's co-founder and CEO Jonah Peretti said in a memo to staff at the time that layoffs would also take place in the business, content, technical and administrative teams in addition to the news division.

Earlier this month, Buzzfeed reported a first-quarter loss of $35.7 million, or 72 cents per share, on revenue of $44.8 million. Advertising revenues fell 22%, while content revenues fell 19%. The company expects a deteriorating sales situation.

Ramaswamy suspended his bid for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination in January and endorsed former President Donald Trump after finishing a distant fourth in the early Iowa caucuses.

The son of Indian immigrants, Ramaswamy entered politics at the highest level after making hundreds of millions of dollars at the intersection of hedge funds and pharmaceutical research, a career he charted and built when he graduated from Harvard University and then at Yale Law School.

Shares of New York City-based Buzzfeed Inc. rose 59% to about $4 early Wednesday.

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