Berkshire Partners Continues Heavy Insider Buying: Mattress Firm, Nimble Storage, Graham Holdings and More

Welcome to the second quarter. After a roller-coaster first three months of the year, which took a huge rally off the lows to just get to even, investors may breathe a sigh of relief. One thing is for sure, with first quarter’s earnings season right around the corner, insider transactions are likely to slow down as windows to trade are closed for executives and 10% institutional owners.

We cover insider buying every week at 24/7 Wall St., and we like to remind our readers that while insider buying is usually a very positive sign, it is not in of itself a reason to run out and buy a stock. Sometimes insiders and 10% owners have stock purchase plans set up at intervals to add to their holdings. That aside, it still remains a positive indicator.

Here are some of the companies that reported notable insider buying last week.

Mattress Firm Holding Corp. (NASDAQ: MFRM) had a larger shareholder adding to positions this past week. Berkshire Partners made two significant buys. Earlier in the week, the company bought 205,409 shares of the stock at prices that fell between $39.02 and $39.48 apiece. The total for that trade came to $8 million. Later in the week, the company bought an additional 234,416 shares at share prices from $41.50 to $42.48, which cost an additional $10 million. The stock closed on Friday at $42.31, so the timing looks very good.

Commercial Vehicle Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CVGI) had a 10% owner of the company buying shares in a big way. The investors purchased a total of 643,300 shares at prices that ranged from $2.47 to $2.50. The total for the trade came to $1.5 million. The company designs, engineers, produces and sells various cab-related products and systems in North America, Europe and the Asia/Pacific regions. The stock closed Friday at $2.52.

Nimble Storage Inc.

(NASDAQ: NMBL) was a hot tech stock that has been hit hard, and a director of the company decided to acquire shares last week. That director bought a block of 40,000 shares at prices that ranged between $6.96 and $7.19. The total for the purchase came to $300,000. The company provides flash-optimized storage platforms. The company’s software and storage systems handle various mainstream applications, including virtual desktops, databases, email, collaboration and analytics. The stock closed Friday at $7.77, so the timing looks good.

Patriot National Inc. (NYSE: PN) had a director, who is also a 10% owner of the company, buying shares this past week. That director bought 89,200 shares at prices that fell between $6.94 and $7.75. The total for the buy came to $700,000. The director also bought an additional 100,000 shares at $5.51 to $6.00 a share, for $600,000. The company provides technology-enabled outsourcing solutions within the workers’ compensation marketplace for insurance carriers, local governments, reinsurance captives and other employers in the United States. The stock closed Friday at $8.51, up 10.5% on the day.

Graham Holdings Corp.‘s (NYSE: GHC) president chief executive officer, Timothy O’Shaughnessy, bought some of the stock last week. At the whopping price of $464 per share, his purchase of 1,100 shares cost him some $500,000. Graham Holdings is an education and media company, and the stock closed Friday at $488.73, so the timing looks good here too.

These companies also reported insider buying this week: Demandware Inc. (NYSE: DWRE), Flex Pharma Inc. (NASDAQ: FLKS), Mirati Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: MRTX), OvaScience Inc. (NASDAQ: OVAS) and Rentech Nitrogen Partners L.P. (NYSE: RGEN).

While things may slow for a few weeks, the first quarter was a busy one for insider buying. While it remains to be seen how this quarter will be, the overall tone of insider activity remains positive.

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