Bed Bath & Beyond’s CFO Gustavo Arnal fell to his death in Manhattan

Signage outside a Bed Bath & Beyond store in New York, on August 25, 2022.

Gabby Jones | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Bed Bath & Beyond on Sunday confirmed that chief financial officer Gustavo Arnal died over the weekend, after police had previously said Arnal fell to his death.

“The entire Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. organization is deeply saddened by this shocking loss,”[ads1]; the company said in a statement.

Arnal, 52, fell from a building in midtown Manhattan on Friday afternoon, according to police. The iconic skyscraper, known locally as the “Jenga Tower” or “Jenga Building”, has more than 50 floors of uniquely stacked apartments.

Emergency Medical Services pronounced the victim dead at the scene, according to a spokesperson from the New York City Office of the Deputy Commissioner, the public information office for the city’s police department.

A police source told CNN on Sunday that Arnal’s wife had seen him jump. The source went on to note that although no suicide note had been found, no criminality was suspected. The New York Times reported that police say it appears to be a suicide, but an NYPD spokesperson tells CNBC that it is up to the Medical Examiner’s Office to make a final determination on the cause of death. At this stage the investigation continues.

Since joining Bed Bath in 2020, Arnal has made several purchases and sales of the company’s shares. Last month, he sold more than 55,000 shares for $1.23 million, according to a filing, which said he still held 255,396 shares at the time.

Bed Bath’s stock is down 43% this year — and about 90% from its all-time high.

Arnal, who also spent 20 years at Procter & Gamble, died days after the company announced plans to close 150 of its “lower-producing” namesake stores. The New Jersey-based retailer also said it would cut 20% of its workforce and added that it had secured more than $500 million in new financing, including a loan.

The cost-cutting measures come as Bed Bath’s core business continues to struggle. The company revealed continued declining sales on Wednesday, with same-store sales falling 26% for the three-month window ended Aug. 27 — a bigger drop than in previous quarters.

Some analysts say that while the turnaround plan announced Wednesday will improve the company’s liquidity position, it will not be sufficient to save Bed Bath’s business. Raymond James downgraded the stock on Thursday, saying the cost cuts and new financing “just kick the can down the road.”

If you are having suicidal thoughts, get in touch Suicide and crisis lifeline on 988 for support and assistance from a trained counsellor.

This is a development story. Please check back for updates.

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