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Bed Bath & Beyond CFO Gustavo Arnal Jumps To Death, Days After Announcing Job Cuts

The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Bed Bath & Beyond jumped to his death from a high-rise in Manhattan, according to the police. Gustavo Arnal jumped from the 18th floor of “Jenga” tower, the police added, days after the struggling retailer announced it was closing stores and laying off workers. Mr Arnal joined Bed Bath & Beyond in 2020. He previously worked as CFO for cosmetics brand Avon and had a 20-year stint with Procter & Gamble, news agency Reuters reported.
The tower from where he jumped is best known for its purposely misaligned apartments stacked atop each other, resembling the popular game Jenga.

The New York Police Department (NYPD) told CNN that the 52-year-old “was found unconscious and unresponsive” outside the skyscraper at 12.30pm on Friday. They added that the man “appeared to suffer from injuries indicative from a fall from an elevated position”. The personnel of the emergency services, who reached the site, pronounced the man dead, the outlet further said in its report quoting the police.

The CNN report said that Mr Arnal’s wife witnessed him jump, but no criminality is suspected.

The police statement did not provide further details on the circumstances leading to Mr Arnal’s death and said the New York City Medical Examiner’s Office would determine the cause of death. Bed Bath & Beyond confirmed his death in a press statement on Sunday but gave no details.

Harriet Edelman, the Independent Chair of Bed Bath & Beyond’s Board of Directors, extended “sincerest condolences to Gustavo’s family”. “Our focus is on supporting his family and his team and our thoughts are with them during this sad and difficult time. Please join us in respecting the family’s privacy,” the statement said.

The big-box chain – once considered a so-called “category killer” in home and bath goods – has seen its fortunes falter after an attempt to sell more of its own brand, or private-label goods.

Last week, Bed Bath & Beyond said it would close 150 stores, cut jobs and overhaul its merchandising strategy in an attempt to turn around its money-losing business.

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On August 23, the company, Mr Arnal and major shareholder Ryan Cohen were sued over accusations of artificially inflating the firm’s stock price in a “pump and dump” scheme, with the lawsuit alleging Mr Arnal sold off his shares at a higher price after the scheme, according to Reuters.

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