…there has been a large secondary transaction in Automattic stock, about $50M worth. “Secondary” means that it’s existing stockholders, like the earliest investors or employees, selling stock to another investor versus money going into the company (“primary”)
What this means is that a small number shareholders of Automattic made a decision to sell some of their shares to an outside investor, turning paper wealth into actual cash money.
Typically these sorts of transactions aren’t about the company, but more about the folks buying/selling the stock. A company like Automattic probably has a pretty long list of folks interested in acquiring some stock in the company. At the same time there are stockholders who for various reasons may want to convert some of their shares to cash.1» Of course this sounds like a straight forward market transaction, but since Automattic is privately held the rules are different and the stock isn’t simply traded like Google or Microsoft.
The bottom line is that Automattic continues doing cool things with WordPress and more and some folks have an extra happy holiday weekend.