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Former Funcom CEO investigated for insider trading

Trond Arne Aas allegedly sold 650,000 shares after stepping down prior to stock slump

Former Funcom CEO Trond Arne Aas is being investigated for insider trading after stepping down from the role in July, The Escapist reports.

Aas stepped down from his position as CEO the day before The Secret World went live, prior to a round of layoffs and a disappointing financial report that sent its stock price into decline.

In doing so, he was struck from Funcom's "primary insider list", which allowed him to trade his stock without reporting it publicly on the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE). Citing an anonymous insider "familiar with the situation," The Escapist claims that Aas then attempted to sell 1.5 million shares, though he only successfully sold around 650,000.

"His sale was discovered by another shareholder that subscribes to other shareholder lists, and when Trond's sales became public, Funcom's stock price tanked," the source said.

Aas is now under investigation by the OSE and the Norwegian Financial Services Authority, though he claims that he had no knowledge of The Secret World's disappointing sales when he left the role of CEO.

"Go back to the week [of launch] to look at the data that was available when the decision was made," he told "There was no [one] at Funcom who [had] different insights than what was communicated [by the users]."

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Matthew Handrahan: Matthew Handrahan joined GamesIndustry in 2011, bringing long-form feature-writing experience to the team as well as a deep understanding of the video game development business. He previously spent more than five years at award-winning magazine gamesTM.
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