ComScore Stock Plunges on Accounting Issues

Shares of measurement giant comScore plunged more than 30% on Monday after the company said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing that its board of directors was recently notified of certain potential accounting issues.

In the filing, comScore said the Audit Committee of its board of directors received a message “regarding certain potential accounting matters,” on Feb. 19 and immediately began a review with the help of independent counsel and advisers. On  Feb. 29 comScore filed for a 15-day extension to file its 10-K annual report with the SEC.

While the Audit Committee continues to work on the problem, it notified the board on March 5 that it did not expect to complete its review before March 15. That caused the board to ask for a further extension to file its 10-K and to postpone its Investor Day, scheduled for March 16. In addition, comScore also suspended its stock repurchase program, adding that the buyback program will be reevaluated after the company completes its internal review and files its 10-K.

Comscore stock took it on the nose Monday, falling as much as 33% ($13.23 each) to $27.48 per share. The stock was trading at $29.11 each at 11:28 a.m., down 28.5% ($11.60 each).

ComScore completed its merger with set-top box measurement company Rentrak on Jan. 29. The deal was valued at  about $779 million and was touted as creating a stronger No.2 competitor to industry leader Nielsen.