Since 20 March, the share price of Sea Ltd (NYSE: SE) has surged more than 200%, with investors very bullish about the prospects of tech in Southeast Asia.

In the chatter in the region, a few employees & ex-employees of Sea expressed regret about selling their shares too early.

Some of them sold end 2018, when the share price grew more than 100% from an earlier level which did not change much since its IPO:

Others sold in March, when the price tumbled almost 30%, as part of the panic when covid-19 was becoming a pandemic: 

The reasons? 

So why did they sell? In the first scenario, some said they were happy with the 100% return, and wanted to lock down that profit. In the second scenario, it was normally part of the general panic.

But many said they did not believe that the company would become more valuable, as they saw lots of issues with management, with product, and with cash burn.

And some believe that as insiders, they are more informed than the general market.

More complex than it seems

So they missed the surge.

The real picture is probably much more nuanced. With a community deeply entrenched in Southeast Asia’s tech ecosystem, Momentum Works captures a fair bit of the chatter – and quite often people are doomsaying about their companies.

There are probably stupid external analysis, like this one, impacting people’s confidence.

Of course, internal people, especially of fast growing organisations, see more problems than outside people – the real question is, do these problems matter to the whole picture?

Missing that analysis/strategic visibility is probably the reason why many missed the surge.

Thanks for reading The Low Down (TLD), the blog by the team at Momentum Works. Got a different perspective or have a burning opinion to share? Let us know at hello@mworks.asia.