DocuSign (NYSE: DOCU) stock is trading marginally higher in US premarket price action today after the company’s board appointed Allan Thygesen as the new CEO. Thygesen last headed Google’s Americas & Global Partners business and would replace interim CEO, Maggie Wilderotter.

There has been a terrible sell-off in growth stocks amid the Federal Reserve’s rate hikes. After disappointing quarterly earnings in June, DocuSign’s CEO Dan Springer stepped down and the board began the process of hunting for a replacement.

Commenting on Thygesen’s appointment, Wilderotter said, “During this time of accelerated digital transformation at companies large and small, there is no better person to lead DocuSign than Allan Thygesen.”

She described Thygesen as “a customer-focused innovator with deep experience in e-commerce.” Wilderotter added, “Over the last quarter, DocuSign has made significant progress in expanding its executive team, enhanced its product roadmap and centered its focus on sustainable and profitable growth at scale; all setting the table for our next CEO.”

Amid falling stock prices, there has been a flurry of top management changes at growth companies. Peloton too replaced its founder and CEO John Foley with Barry McCarthy. Since 2021, several companies including Lordstown Motors, Nikola, ContextLogic, and Twitter have announced new CEOs.

DocuSign Gets a New CEO: Would It Revive the Fortunes?

DocuSign stock is down almost 65% so far in 2022 and hit a new 52-week low yesterday. The sell-off in growth stocks has intensified as the US Federal Reserve has indicated that it would continue to raise rates to tame inflation.

While DOCU stock has tumbled this year, Cathie Wood of ARK Invest has bought more DocuSign shares. Wood is known to back up her favorite names. However, her strategy of buying the dip in stocks hasn’t worked well so far in 2022 and the flagship ARK Innovation ETF is down almost 60% in 2022.

Wood invests in growth stocks and her strategy outperformed the markets in 2020. However, ARK ETFs came under pressure in 2021 amid rising inflation and the resultant sell-off in growth stocks. Her ETFs have continued to tumble in 2022 and their price action best captures the turmoil in growth stocks.

ARK runs a mix of active and passive ETFs based on different themes. We have a guide on how to invest in ETFs.

DOCU Reported Better Than Expected Earnings

Earlier this month, DocuSign reported earnings for the fiscal third quarter of 2023. It reported revenues of $622 million in the fiscal second quarter that ended in July. The revenues rose 22% YoY and were ahead of the $602 million that analysts were expecting. Its adjusted EPS was 44 cents in the quarter.

While the metric was below the 47 cents that it posted in the corresponding quarter last year, it was nonetheless ahead of 42 cents that analysts were expecting. The company also maintained its full fiscal year revenue guidance of $2.470 billion to $2.482 billion. DocuSign stock had soared after the earnings release as markets gave a thumbs up to the earnings and guidance.

DocuSign believes that its total addressable market is $50 billion. However, in the short-term, the company continues to battle tough macroeconomic environment where investors continue to shun growth stocks.

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