CEO Austin Russell Just Made a Big Bet on Luminar (LAZR) Stock


  • Luminar Technologies (LAZR) CEO Austin Russell disclosed purchasing $7.57 million of his own company.
  • The world’s youngest self-made billionaire announced an 82% acquisition of Forbes earlier this week.
  • LAZR stock is up more than 35% year-to-date (YTD).
Luminar (LAZR stock) sign with greenery around it
Source: JHVEPhoto/

Austin Russell, the 28-year-old billionaire who earned the title of the world’s youngest self-made billionaire at age 25, has been on an absolute shopping spree. Earlier this week, the Luminar Technologies (NASDAQ:LAZR) CEO and Stanford dropout disclosed that he would purchase 82% of Forbes for $656 million, valuing the company at $800 million.

After that announcement, Russell also filed a Form 4 to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) yesterday disclosing a massive $7.57 million insider purchase of LAZR stock equivalent to 1.3 million shares. Russell purchased the shares at an average price of $5.82. Following the transaction, he now owns a total of 2.33 million shares. That means he more than doubled his position with the recent buy.

Here’s what else investors should know.

CEO Austin Russell Buys 1.3 Million Shares of LAZR Stock

Meanwhile, Luminar Director Jun Hong Heng also disclosed an insider purchase made on the same day as Russell’s buy. On May 15, Heng purchased 33,750 shares priced at $5.91 apiece through his trust. In total, the transaction was valued at just under $200,000.

Russell is no stranger to buying shares of his own company. Although his recent purchase was his first buy of 2023, the CEO disclosed buying LAZR stock many times last year. During 2022, he purchased a total of 980,000 shares. Many of these shares were purchased in the $10 to $15 range, which means that Russell is sitting on heavy unrealized losses. Still, it’s notable that Austin’s single purchase of LAZR this year has already surpassed all of his purchases last year. It seems that the CEO may be employing a dollar-cost averaging (DCA) strategy.

Luminar reported its first-quarter earnings earlier this month. For the period, revenue tallied in at $14.51 million, up 112% year-over-year (YOY) and beating the analyst estimate for $11.94 million. Furthermore, the lidar company posted a non-GAAP EPS loss of 24 cents, which missed the analyst estimate for a loss of 21 cents. GAAP EPS was a loss of 40 cents.

“Over the past quarter, leading automakers have continued to expand our technology across their vehicle lineups, betting the future of their ADAS and autonomous roadmaps in partnership with Luminar,” said Russell in the earnings announcement.

For guidance, Luminar expects 100% revenue growth this year. The company also expects to end the year with cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities, including liquidity, of more than $300 million.

On the date of publication, Eddie Pan did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the Publishing Guidelines. 

Eddie Pan specializes in institutional investments and insider activity. He writes for InvestorPlace’s Today’s Market team, which centers on the latest news involving popular stocks.

Article printed from InvestorPlace Media,

©2023 InvestorPlace Media, LLC