Ryan Cohen, born in 1985 in Montreal to a Jewish family, embodies the quintessential spirit of an entrepreneur. His journey into the realms of business commenced under the subtle tutelage of his father, who operated a glassware company. Often crediting his father as the beacon of his entrepreneurial journey, Cohen’s footsteps into the business world were firm and decisive, even bypassing the traditional route of college education, a path also traversed by his late father. Ryan’s father’s passing in 2016 further fueled his resolve to carve his niche in the business world.
Founding and Evolution of Chewy
At a relatively young age, Ryan’s entrepreneurial journey took flight with the establishment of Chewy in 2011. The company, originally coined as MrChewy, was ignited by Cohen’s experience and inspiration from his father and his shopping endeavors for his poodle, Tylee. Chewy stood as a testament to Ryan’s profound understanding and intuition in selecting viable categories for his venture. Despite initial challenges in securing capital, perseverance led him to his first substantial funding from Volition Capital, amounting to $15 million, paving the path for a future influx from stalwarts like BlackRock and T. Rowe Price New Horizons Fund.
Financial Strides and Acquisitions
Ryan Cohen’s meticulous leadership spurred Chewy’s ascendancy to become the top online pet retailer, hitting the $900 million sales mark by 2016. Cohen’s unwavering pursuit led to the remarkable acquisition of Chewy by PetSmart in April 2017 for $3.35 billion, making headlines as the largest e-commerce acquisition ever. Even post-acquisition, Cohen continued his stewardship, elevating the company’s revenue to $3.5 billion before parting ways to focus on personal aspirations and family, leaving behind a legacy and a company valued at $8.7 billion at its public debut in June 2019.
Leadership Reimagined at GameStop
January 2021 marked a pivotal juncture in Cohen’s journey as he, along with his former Chewy colleagues, integrated into the GameStop board. Ryan Cohen’s role as the newly appointed chairman spearheaded a transformative agenda, evidenced by a monumental 1,500% stock surge within two weeks of his association. Cohen’s radical structural and operational revamps within GameStop included comprehensive executive overhauls, reflecting a vision steeped in innovation and transformative agility, culminating in his appointment as the Chief Executive Officer of GameStop on September 28, 2023, a role he embraced without any salary attachments.
Investments and Net Worth
Ryan Cohen’s financial acumen extends beyond entrepreneurial ventures, with his net worth estimated to be around $621 million as of September 29, 2023. Post-Chewy, Cohen diversified his financial portfolio, becoming the largest individual shareholder in Apple with 1.55 million shares, and securing significant stakes in GameStop and Bed Bath & Beyond, the latter being subsequently sold at a substantial profit of $68 million. These strategic investments underscore Cohen’s foresight and proficiency in maximizing financial growth and value.
Ryan Cohen’s Multifaceted Legacy
Ryan Cohen, from his humble beginnings in Montreal, has etched an indelible mark on the business landscape. His journey, from founding Chewy to his transformative leadership at GameStop, is a manifestation of innovative foresight, unwavering perseverance, and entrepreneurial acumen. His extensive and diverse investment portfolio further accentuates his multifaceted business prowess, rendering him a pivotal figure in the contemporary business world. Ryan Cohen’s enduring legacy continues to inspire budding entrepreneurs and business enthusiasts across the globe, proving the infinite possibilities within the realms of determination, innovation, and leadership.