Welcome to edition twenty seven of Insider Weekends. Insider buying increased last week with insiders purchasing $83.4 million of their stock when compared to $12.9 million in the week prior. Selling also increased with insiders selling $1.75 billion worth of stock when compared to $1.27 billion in the week prior.
The insider Sell/Buy ratio is calculated by dividing the total insider sales in a given week by total insider buying in that week. The adjusted ratio for last week plunged to 20.92. In other words, insiders sold almost 21 times as much stock as they purchased. The Sell/Buy ratio this week compares favorably with the week prior when the ratio stood at 98.13. The spike in insider purchases was driven primarily by large purchases of Scientific Games (SGMS) by one of its directors and additional funding provided by Mr. Carl Berg for both Valence (VLNC) and MoSys (MOSY). We are calculating an adjusted ratio by removing transactions by funds and companies and trying as best as possible only to retain information about insiders and 10% owners who are not funds or companies.
Note: As mentioned in the first post in this series Introduction to Insider Weekends, certain industries have their preferred metrics such as same store sales for retailers, funds from operations (FFO) for REITs and revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels that provide a better basis for comparison than simple valuation metrics. However metrics like Price/Earnings, Price/Sales and Enterprise Value/EBITDA included below should provide a good starting point for analyzing the majority of stocks.
Notable Insider Buys:
1. Scientific Games Corporation (SGMS): $9.385
Shares of this producer of lottery systems were purchases by four insiders:
Scientific Games stands out for a couple of reasons. The cluster purchase by a number of insiders and the size of these purchases. With this purchase Mr. Perelman picked up more than 4% of the total outstanding stock and now owns almost 32% of the company. At first I thought this purchase was probably part of a secondary offering or debt conversion but there was nothing in the filing to indicate this was anything other than a regular purchase. Moreover the company has enough cash on the balance sheet to meet short-term liquidity needs.
The stock saw a nice 20% spike on Nov 30 after the former CEO who served from 1992 to 2008 was brought back in to run the company.
|P/E: N/A||Forward P/E: 24.7||Industry P/E: 13.12|
|P/S: 0.93||Price/Book: 1.36||EV/EBITDA: 9.76|
|Market Cap: $859.73M||Avg. Daily Volume: 991,917||52 Week Range: $6.58 – $17.01|
2. Valence Technology Inc. (VLNC): $1.38
Chairman Carl Berg acquired 3,759,789 shares of this battery technology company, paying $1.2 per share for a total amount of $4.5 million. Mr Berg increased his stake by 9.02% to 45.44 million shares with this purchase. Mr. Berg is both the founder and Chairman of Valence and has been on the board of directors since 1991. He put in $2 million of his money into Valence in September to prop up this company that has been losing money for several years. This $4.5 million appears to be another investment into the company but the filing did not indicate it as such.
The company saw a sharp increase in fiscal Q2 revenue which is up 278% YoY to $12.7 million. Gross margins improved and the operating loss narrowed but the company still lost $2.7 million in the quarter. The company expects fiscal Q3 revenue of $12 to $14 million. Its fiscal year runs from April to March. The company signed an agreement in September to supply batteries to UK based hybrid bus company Wrightbus worth $19 to $24 million over a period of 6 years. While revenue is ramping up, the company has a leveraged balance sheet and is still losing money.
|P/E: N/A||Forward P/E: N/A||Industry P/E: 18.91|
|P/S: 7.72||Price/Book: N/A||EV/EBITDA: -18.75|
|Market Cap: $199.57M||Avg. Daily Volume: 955,125||52 Week Range: $0.64 – $1.55|
3. PHI, Inc. (PHII): $19.10
Chief Executive Officer Alton Anthony Gonsoulin Jr acquired 200,000 shares of this helicopter transportation services provider, paying $17.99 per share for a total amount of $3.6 million. Mr Gonsoulin increased his stake by 13.32% to 1,701,580 shares with this purchase. With a three month average daily volume of just 8,514, I was surprised to such a large purchase and was wondering if it was indeed an open market purchase or some other type of transaction. Checking the volume on December 07, 2010, the date of the purchase, confirmed that this was indeed an open market purchase as the volume on that day spiked to nearly 50 times average daily volume with 402,500 shares traded.
The valuation of PHI does look attractive with the company selling at just 0.54 times tangible book value and a EV/EBITDA of 5.9. There have been no other insider purchases or sales over the last year. The key areas of concern are the low volume mentioned earlier, a quarterly loss reported in the third quarter and low single digit margins.
|P/E: 32.82||Forward P/E: N/A||Industry P/E: N/A|
|P/S: 0.56||Price/Book: 0.61||EV/EBITDA: 6.11|
|Market Cap: $292.44M||Avg. Daily Volume: 8,569||52 Week Range: $13.15 – $24.10|
4. MoSys, Inc. (MOSY): $4.79
Shares of this semiconductor company were purchased by two insiders:
|P/E: N/A||Forward P/E: N/A||Industry P/E: 19.19|
|P/S: 9.95||Price/Book: 2.92||EV/EBITDA: -7.05|
|Market Cap: $153.84M||Avg. Daily Volume: 63,378||52 Week Range: $3 – $5.23|
5. China MediaExpress Holdings, In (CCME): $15.52
Shares of this television advertising network provider were purchased by two insiders:
|P/E: 6.56||Forward P/E: 5.41||Industry P/E: N/A|
|P/S: 2.75||Price/Book: 3.19||EV/EBITDA: 2.70|
|Market Cap: $532.18M||Avg. Daily Volume: 1,122,930||52 Week Range: $7.58 – $22.30|
Notable Insider Sales:
1. Campbell Soup Co. (CPB): $34.48
Shares of this soup and retail products company were sold by three insiders:
|P/E: 14.6||Forward P/E: 12.91||Industry P/E: 17.03|
|P/S: 1.51||Price/Book: 10.46||EV/EBITDA: 9.04|
|Market Cap: $11.55B||Avg. Daily Volume: 2,450,490||52 Week Range: $32.18 – $37.59|
2. RealD Inc. (RLD): $27.65
Shares of this movie production company that went public in August 2010 were sold by five insiders:
|P/E: N/A||Forward P/E: 46.08||Industry P/E: 20.81|
|P/S: 6.3||Price/Book: 11.2||EV/EBITDA: -91.12|
|Market Cap: $1.34B||Avg. Daily Volume: 397,798||52 Week Range: $15.63 – $30.55|
3. Estee Lauder Companies Inc. (EL): $78.09
Shares of this personal products company were sold by two insiders:
|P/E: 29.73||Forward P/E: 21.05||Industry P/E: 19.67|
|P/S: 1.9||Price/Book: 7.22||EV/EBITDA: 12.86|
|Market Cap: $15.29B||Avg. Daily Volume: 1,486,180||52 Week Range: $47.09 – $78.82|
4. Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance, Inc. (ULTA): $34.71
Director Lynelle Kirby sold 649,900 shares of this beauty retailer for $34.32 per share, generating a total amount of $22.3 million. 349,900 of these shares were sold as a result of exercising options immediately prior to the sale.
|P/E: 37.61||Forward P/E: 25.15||Industry P/E: 12.57|
|P/S: 1.55||Price/Book: 6.24||EV/EBITDA: 12.96|
|Market Cap: $2.05B||Avg. Daily Volume: 527,655||52 Week Range: $17.05 – $37.24|
5. TD AMERITRADE Holding Corporation (AMTD): $18.45
Director Joe Ricketts sold 799,675 shares of this securities brokerage services provider for $18.54 per share, generating a total amount of $14.83 million.
|P/E: 18.45||Forward P/E: 13.67||Industry P/E: 14.37|
|P/S: 4.24||Price/Book: 2.82||EV/EBITDA: N/A|
|Market Cap: $10.63B||Avg. Daily Volume: 3,506,110||52 Week Range: $14.53 – $20.58|
Voluntary Disclosure: I hold a long position in Scientific Games ( SGMS).