GameStop, Kohl’s, and Calavo See Big Insider Stock Buys

A GameStop director made the first insider stock purchase this year, while the CEOs of retailer Kohl’s and avocado grower Calavo scooped up shares.

Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

As the first quarter came to a close, some company insiders bought up shares on the open market.



(ticker: GME) director just made the first open-market stock purchase this year, while the CEOs of department-store chain


(KSS) and avocado slinger

Calavo Growers

(CVGW) picked up millions of dollars of stock.

All three stocks turned in performances last year that fell far short of the market. GameStop, Kohl’s, and Calavo stock dropped 50%, 49%, and 31% in 2022, respectively, compared with a 19% slip in the

S&P 500 index.

It’s a mixed bag so far in 2023, with GameStop shares up 21%, and Kohl’s and Calavo stock down 10% and 1.7%, respectively. The index is up 6.9% year to date.

GameStop stock has been gaining this year as the meme rally resurrected itself. Director Larry Cheng paid $114,000 on March 29 for 5,000 shares, an average price of $22.80 each. He purchased the stock through a limited liability company that now owns 37,088 GameStop shares, according to a form Cheng filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. He also owns 7,000 additional shares in a personal account.

Cheng, a founding partner at Volition Capital, didn’t respond to a request for comment on his stock purchase. He last bought stock on the open market in March 2022, when he paid $383,355 for 4,000 GameStop shares, an average price of $95.84 each. That same month, GameStop Chairman Ryan Cohen, an activist investor, paid $10.2 million for 100,000 GameStop shares. Those figures are unadjusted for a 4-for-1 stock split in July 2022.

Kohl’s has been no stranger to investor activism, and named Tom Kingsbury CEO effective Feb. 2 as a result. He had been serving as interim CEO since Dec. 2, 2022. He paid $2 million on March 29 for 92,500 shares, an average price of $21.82 each. Kingsbury, a former CEO of

Burlington Stores

(BURL), now owns 228,993 Kohl’s shares, including unvested shares of restricted stock and restricted stock units.

Kohl’s declined to make Kingsbury available for comment on his stock purchase.

Just last month, Calavo also saw a CEO change—to a previous CEO who had retired in 2020. Lee Cole agreed to rejoin the company on March 13 at the top post for three years, “with the goal of returning the company to a position of growth and shareholder value creation.”

Cole paid $2.6 million from March 21 through 28 for a total of 100,000 shares, an average price of $26.12 each. He now owns 440,000 Calavo shares in a personal account. Calavo didn’t respond to a request to make Cole available for comment on his stock purchase.

Inside Scoop is a regular Barron’s feature covering stock transactions by corporate executives and board members—so-called insiders—as well as large shareholders, politicians, and other prominent figures. Due to their insider status, these investors are required to disclose stock trades with the Securities and Exchange Commission or other regulatory groups.

Write to Ed Lin at [email protected] and follow @BarronsEdLin.

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