Four major shareholders in hangout cafes operator Loungers (LGRS:AIM), including chief executive Nick Collins, have sold shares worth a combined £9.1 million in the past week.

Collins, investor Lion Capital, chairman Alex Reilley and commercial director Jake Bishop collectively sold 4.25 million shares, representing 4.2% of the company’s issued share capital, at a price of 215p each, a 7.3% discount to the company’s closing price the day before at 232p.

The sale comes after Loungers’ share price rose significantly since the start of November, rising from 134p on 6 November to around 215p today, following the coronavirus vaccine news.

The market’s upbeat mood was also fueled by the company’s strong like-for-like growth and higher profit margins, although 11 weeks of lockdown in the 24 weeks to 4 October predictably took its toll.

Revenues for the period plunged 33% to £53.5 million but a 6.6% hike in EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) margins to 24.7% limited the impact on profits. EBITDA of £13.2 million was just 8% down on the equivalent period last year.

GB GROUP BOSSES BUY IN

Meanwhile top executives at identity management firm GB Group (GBG:AIM) have been buying up shares in their company at 874p each for a combined total of around £725,000.

Chief executive Chris Clark snapped up 40,814 shares for an outlay of almost £357,000, while chief financial and operating officer Dave Wilson bought 20,979 for over £183,000, and managing director Nick Brown purchased 21,168 shares for around £185,000. None of their stakes are above 1%.

The company’s half-year results to 30 September published earlier this month showed its ability to tough out the Covid-19 crisis in impressive fashion.

Revenue grew close on 10% to £104 million while adjusted operating profits grew 24.5% to £26.8 million, bolstered by a major contract win. The company’s shares are currently trading near their all-time high at 896p.

For a full list of the week’s most significant trades, click here.

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Issue Date: 17 Dec 2020