Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C. Reminds Investors That Class Action Lawsuits Have Been Filed Against Covetrus, Altria Group, Match Group, and Dropbox and Encourages Investors to Contact the Firm

NEW YORK, Oct. 30, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C., a nationally recognized shareholder law firm, reminds investors that class action lawsuits have been commenced on behalf of stockholders of Covetrus, Inc. (NASDAQ: CVET), Altria Group, Inc. (NYSE: MO), Match Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: MTCH), and Dropbox, Inc. (NASDAQ: DBX). Stockholders have until the deadlines below to petition the court to serve as lead plaintiff. Additional information about each case can be found at the link provided.

Covetrus, Inc. (NASDAQ: CVET)

Class Period: February 8, 2019 to August 12, 2019

Lead Plaintiff Deadline: November 29, 2019

Covetrus was formed through a spin-off and merger of the Animal Health Business of Henry Schein with Vets First Choice (VFC), a privately-held Company, to create what the Company described to investors as the only global animal health technology and services company.

The complaint, filed on September 30, 2019, alleges that in the offering documents for the spin-merger and throughout the Class Period, defendants made a series of false and misleading statements and omissions concerning the newly combined companies' infrastructure and capabilities, as well as the true costs of becoming independent from Henry Schein. After the merger, defendants assured investors that the integration of the legacy Henry Schein Animal Health Business and VFC was on track to hit financial targets. On August 13, 2019, Covetrus shocked investors by reporting a net loss of $0.09 per share for the second quarter of 2019 compared to consensus analyst estimates of $0.17 in net income per share. Covetrus also slashed its 2019 EBITDA guidance to just $200 million, down substantially from its prior EBITDA guidance of approximately $250 million issued in February and May 2019. In doing so, Covetrus admitted that the Company would have to spend tens of millions of dollars more in infrastructure spending and redundant costs.

The Company also admitted previously undisclosed difficulties integrating the platforms and disclosed increased spending to eliminate obligations to Henry Schein as part of the spin-off agreement. In response to these and other disclosures, the Company’s stock price decreased by 40%, or $9.30 per share, to close at $13.89 per share on August 13, 2019.

The complaint further alleges that during the Class Period, defendants issued a series of false and/or misleading statements and failed to disclose material adverse facts about Covetrus business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, defendants representations to investors: (i) overstated Covetrus capabilities with regard to inventory management and supply chain services; (ii) understated the costs of the integration of Henry Schein's Animal Health Business and VFC, including the timing and nature of those costs; (iii) understated Covetrus separation costs from Henry Schein; and (iv) understated the impact on earnings from online competition and alternative distribution channels as well as the impact of the loss of a large customer in North America just prior to the company’s separation from Henry Schein.

For more information on the Covetrus class action go to:

Altria Group, Inc. (NYSE: MO)

Class Period: December 20, 2018 to September 24, 2019

Lead Plaintiff Deadline: December 2, 2019

Altria, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells cigarettes, smokeless tobacco products, and alcoholic beverages in the United States. The Company sells its tobacco products primarily to wholesalers, including distributors; large retail organizations, such as chain stores; and the armed services. On December 20, 2018, Altria issued a press release announcing that it had signed and closed a $12.8 billion investment in JUUL Labs, Inc. (“JUUL”), the purported U.S. leader in electronic vapor products, including e-cigarettes (the “December 2018 Press Release”). According to the December 2018 Press Release, the service agreements related to the transaction would accelerate JUUL’s mission to switch adult smokers to e-vapor products. Altria’s investment represented a 35% economic interest in JUUL, valuing the company at $38 billion, with JUUL purportedly remaining fully independent.

The complaint, filed on October 2, 2019, alleges that throughout the Class Period, defendants made materially false and misleading statements regarding the Company’s business, operational and compliance policies. Specifically, defendants made false and/or misleading statements and/or failed to disclose that: (i) Altria had conducted insufficient due diligence into JUUL prior to the company’s $12.8 billion investment in JUUL; (ii) Altria consequently failed to inform investors, or account for, material risks associated with JUUL’s products and marketing practices, and the true value of JUUL and its products; (iii) all of the foregoing, as well as mounting public scrutiny, negative publicity, and governmental pressure on e-vapor products and JUUL made it reasonably likely that Altria’s investment in JUUL would have a material negative impact on the company's reputation and operations; and (iv) as a result, the Company’s public statements were materially false and misleading at all relevant times. Following Altria’s multi-billion dollar investment in JUUL, e-vapor products and JUUL increasingly became the subject of public and regulatory scrutiny throughout the country. Mounting skepticism, fear, and negative publicity in the media regarding e-cigarettes’ safety led to increased scrutiny by government authorities into vaping products, and municipalities throughout the country began tightening sales practices related to those products. For example, on April 3, 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) announced its investigation into nearly three dozen cases of people suffering from seizures after “vaping”.

Between 2010 and 2019, the FDA said it received thirty-five reports of people, especially children and young adults, experiencing seizures after using e-cigarettes.

On this news, Altria’s stock price fell $2.71 per share, or 4.78%, to close at $53.98 per share on April 3, 2019. Then, on August 29, 2019, the Wall Street Journal reported that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) was investigating whether JUUL used influencers and other marketing practices to appeal e-cigarettes to minors.

On this news, Altria’s stock price fell $1.60 per share, or 3.49%, to close at $44.25 per share on August 29, 2019.

Additionally, on August 30, 2019, both the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) announced that they were collaborating to investigate e-cigarette related cases of illnesses and “working tirelessly to investigate the distressing incidents of severe respiratory disease associated with use of e-cigarette products.”

On this news, Altria’s stock price fell an additional $0.51 per share, or 1.15%, to close at $43.74 per share on August 30, 2019 a total loss of $2.11 per share, or 4.6%, since closing at $45.85 per share two trading days earlier on August 28, 2019.

On September 11, 2019, news sources reported that the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump was preparing a ban on flavored e-cigarettes as federal agencies probed an outbreak of a lung problem that killed at least six people and reportedly led to the sickness of hundreds of others. President Trump and U.S. Health Secretary Alex Azar reportedly both confirmed that a ban is possible after the vaping issues are investigated. On September 12, 2019, during after-market hours, Reuters reported that, “[w]ithin weeks, New Jersey could become the latest state to restrict e-cigarette use, with the governor on Thursday launching a task force to find ways to curb vaping, linked by U.S. health officials to hundreds of respiratory illnesses and a half-dozen deaths.” Additionally, that same day, the CDC reported that as of September 11, 2019, 380 confirmed and probable cases of lung disease associated with vaping had been reported by thirty-six states and the U.S. Virgin Islands, with six deaths confirmed in six states.

On this news, Altria’s stock price fell $2.45 per share, or 5.51%, to close at $42.01 per share on September 13, 2019. On September 23, 2019, during after-market hours, news sources began reporting that federal prosecutors in California were conducting a criminal probe into JUUL.

Finally, on September 25, 2019, Altria issued a press release announcing that Philip Morris had called off discussions of a $200 billion merger with Altria due to scrutiny of the vaping industry and the Company’s 35% stake in JUUL, which had announced the same day that it was the subject of another federal investigation. JUUL also announced its CEO would step down and the firm would stop all advertising in the U.S.

On this news, Altria’s stock price fell an additional $0.17 per share, or 0.42%, to close at $40.56 per share on September 25, 2019 a total loss of $0.32 per share, or 0.78%, since closing at $40.88 per share two trading days earlier on September 23, 2019.

For more information on the Altria class action go to:

Match Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: MTCH)

Class Period: August 6, 2019 to September 25, 2019

Lead Plaintiff Deadline: December 2, 2019

On September 25, 2019, The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it had sued for, among other things, using artificial love interest ads to deceive consumers into buying or upgrading subscriptions, failing to resolve disputed charges, and intentionally making it difficult to cancel subscriptions.

On this news, the company’s share price fell $1.39 per share, or nearly 2%, to close at $71.44 per share on September 25, 2019.

The complaint, filed October 3, 2019, alleges that throughout the class period defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, as well as failed to disclose material adverse facts about the company’s business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, defendants failed to disclose to investors: (1) that the company used fake love interest ads to convince customers to buy and upgrade subscriptions; (2) that the company made it difficult and confusing for consumers to cancel their subscriptions; (3) that, as a result, the company was reasonably likely to be subject to regulatory scrutiny; (4) that the company lacked adequate disclosure controls and procedures; and (5) that, as a result, defendants positive statements about the company’s business, operations, and prospects, were materially misleading and/or lacked a reasonable basis.

To learn more about the Match Group class action go to:

Dropbox, Inc. (NASDAQ: DBX)

Class Period: Class A common stock purchased pursuant and/or traceable to the Company’s March 23, 2018 initial public offering (“IPO”).

Lead Plaintiff Deadline: December 3, 2019

On February 23, 2018, Dropbox filed a registration statement for its IPO which, after several amendments, was declared effective on March 22, 2018 (the “Registration Statement”). On March 23, 2018, Dropbox filed the prospectus for the IPO, which incorporated and formed part of the Registration Statement. By way of the Registration Statement, defendants offered and sold 41.4 million Class A shares at $21 per share. In addition, the Company conducted a private offering of Class A stock concurrently with the IPO in which it sold over 4.7 million shares to an institutional investor for an additional $100 million in gross proceeds. Numerous Company insiders, including certain of the Individual Defendants, also sold stock in the IPO, making more than $184 million after applicable underwriting discounts. Underwriters received more than $38.6 million in underwriting discounts and fees from the IPO proceeds, and several, including lead underwriters Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC and J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, received tens of millions of dollars more as a result of payments by Dropbox towards a revolving credit facility maintained by these investment banks.

The complaint, filed on November 4, 2019, alleges that the Registration Statement was negligently prepared and, as a result, contained untrue statements of material fact or omitted to state other facts necessary to make the statements made not misleading and was not prepared in accordance with the rules and regulations governing its preparation. Specifically, the Registration Statement claimed that a significant proportion of the Company’s registered user base was primed for monetization. It claimed that 300 million of the Company’s 500 million registered users had unique characteristics making them likely to be monetized over time, purportedly presenting a “significant opportunity to increase [the Company’s] revenues.” 

The Registration Statement also described Dropbox’s business model as involving the “[i]ncrease conversion of registered users to [the Company’s] paid subscription plans.” It highlighted the Company’s increase of paid users from 6.5 million users in 2015 to 11 million users by 2017, representing 69% growth over two years.

In connection with its second quarter 2019 earnings report, Dropbox still claimed to have “more than 500 million registered users” as of June 2019, indicating that the Company had experienced essentially no significant registered user growth since December 31, 2017 — months prior to the IPO. The Company had only converted an additional 2.6 million paid users in the year-and-a-half since the IPO, representing an annualized post-IPO growth rate of only 15% and less than 1% of the “300 million” figure provided in the Registration Statement. Similarly, the Company’s revenue growth rate had dramatically decelerated to only 18% for 2019, a sharp decline from the 40% and 31% annual growth rates highlighted in the Registration Statement.

On August 27, 2019, Dropbox stock closed at $17.53 per share, representing a decline of more than 16% from the IPO price. 

For more information on the Dropbox class action go to:

About Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C.:
Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C. is a nationally recognized law firm with offices in New York and California. The firm represents individual and institutional investors in commercial, securities, derivative, and other complex litigation in state and federal courts across the country. For more information about the firm, please visit Attorney advertising. Prior results do not guarantee similar outcomes. 

Contact Information:
Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C.
Brandon Walker, Esq.
Melissa Fortunato, Esq.
(212) 355-4648