What happened

Shares of 2U (NASDAQ:TWOU) jumped 39.1% in November, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence, both as the online-education platform company faced pressure from activist investors to consider "strategic alternatives" and after it released quarterly results.

On the former, shares rallied more than 15% on Nov. 4, 2019, alone after Bloomberg reported Sachem Head Capital Management had built a position in 2U, specifically with "plans to push the company to explore strategic alternatives, including a sale." Investors haven't received further details on such plans since then, however.

Student with glasses working on a notebook computer with sun shining through a window in the background.


So what

That's not to say 2U's rise last month came as a straight line. Though shares initially popped nearly 20% immediately following the Nov. 12 release of 2U's third-quarter 2019 report -- including a higher-than-expected 43.7% increase in revenue to $153.8 million and a narrower-than-expected adjusted net loss of $0.41 per share -- the stock quickly gave up its gains to trade down 5% that day as investors lamented a lack of details surrounding its drastically tempered plans for new graduate-program launches in the coming year.

Now what

2U says it will provide more specifics on its growth strategy, as well as thoughts on returns on invested capital at its investor day presentation after it files its annual form 10-K with the SEC -- which, based on the timing of past filings, likely means in late February or early March 2020. Of note: 2U had previously scheduled that presentation for early November but delayed the event to give recently appointed CFO Paul Lalljie an "opportunity to review and contribute to the company's long-term strategic planning initiatives."

In light of its largely positive momentum over the past several weeks, it seems that investors decided to offer some grace to 2U -- though shares are still down nearly 40% from their late-July highs. Given the prospect of either a juicy acquisition premium or an encouraging elaboration on its revised growth expectations in the coming months, the stock understandably bounced from its lows last month.

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