For decades, Jim Cramer has been a voice of reason on TheStreet.com. Sources told reporters that Cramer might be dropping his role at TheStreet.
Why is Cramer departing after such a long time, and what's next for the former hedge fund manager turned public-facing investing expert?
Sources tell reporters that Jim Cramer is leaving TheStreet.
According to SeekingAlpha, stock and options authority Cramer is leaving TheStreet after 25 years. Cramer initially founded the website in 1996 alongside Marty Peretz. He won't be renewing his three-year contract that ends at the end of September.
Currently, Cramer has a contract between TheStreet's parent company and his own company, Cramer Digital. The two-year contract was up for an optional third year, but Cramer has reportedly decided not to move forward with it.
TheStreet gave Jim Cramer a brand.
When Cramer first founded TheStreet, he was a hedge fund manager at his own Cramer Levy Partners, where he earned upwards of $10 million annually (and sometimes more, depending on the fund's performance).
After a few years, Cramer was making enough at TheStreet and his other ventures to quit his hedge fund job. By 2005, Cramer had built a strong enough brand for himself to become the host of CNBC's Mad Money. This is when his fame really took off.
While Cramer's $150 million isn't entirely from TheStreet, the site definitely contributed to it. Cramer's current contract grants him $3 million in annual salary, expense payments for Cramer Digital's office space, and a range of securities.
Things changed after TheMaven bought TheStreet.
TheStreet went public in 1999 just before the dot-com bubble burst and stocks went downhill in 2001.
In 2019, a company named TheMaven purchased TheStreet for $16.5 million. TheMaven also has leased licensing rights for Sports Illustrated.
Cramer's contract has largely been in question since the acquisition. He set up a two-year agreement with the option to add a third year. The two-year term ends Sept. 30 and it looks like Cramer won't be renewing it.
Why Cramer's departure could be an investing move
Outside of annual salary and expense payments, Cramer also gets stock options in his contract. His sets of options contracts hold strike prices ranging from $0.54–$0.72 per share. These fall under the OTC stock "MVEN" since TheMaven bought out TheStreet a few years ago.
In July, MVEN stock was $0.75. Now, it's at $0.55. The stock has been wildly volatile over the last year and Cramer might be looking to exercise his options before the security sees an additional decline. As an investment expert, this move makes sense. With a famed personal brand in tow, exercising his MVEN positions could be more beneficial than staying put for $3 million annually.
What's next for Jim Cramer?
Overall, 25 years is a long time to stay with any job. Cramer has made no statements about his other roles, which leaves watchers to assume he's staying on as host of Mad Money. He might also pursue new ventures (including crypto-related ones) with his freshly spare time—or perhaps spend more time with his family.