Akka Technologies (AKA: FP)
Akka Technologies is a leading engineering and technology consulting company. Operating globally, the technology specialist helps the world’s largest industrial groups accelerate innovation and business performance. The company is listed on the Euronext - Paris and currently has a market capitalisation of €1.4 billion.
Akka Technologies news has been very encouraging recently. For example, in November, the group reported a 25.5% increase in consolidated revenue for the first nine months of the year, driven by strong growth in North America and France. Then, in early December, the group announced a share buyback programme. More recently, the company announced its intention to acquire Norwegian technology company Data Respons ASA for NOK 3.7 billion. According to Akka, this acquisition will be a “true game changer in a data driven world.”
Source: 2iQ Research
What looks interesting here is that in mid-January four top-level Akka directors, including Chairman and CEO Mauro Ricci, Deputy CEO Jean-Franck Ricci, CFO Nicolas Valtille, and Group Finance Director Nathalie Buhnemann, purchased a significant number of shares. According to our records, these insiders purchased a total of 169,830 AKA shares, spending around €10.1 million on stock overall. In our view, this is a very bullish signal, as these insiders are likely to have a good understanding of the company’s potential. With that in mind, we think the outlook for Akka Technologies is favourable.
Cantel Medical Corp (CMD: US)
Cantel Medical is a healthcare company that specialises in infection prevention products and services. The group operates three main business units including Endoscopy, Water Purification and Filtration, and Healthcare Disposables, and has operations in the US, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and currently has a market capitalisation of $2.9 billion.
Cantel Medical issued a solid set of first-quarter results on 10 December. For the quarter, sales increased by 14% to $257.2 million, beating the consensus forecast of $253.6 million, while earnings per share came in at $0.65, well ahead of the $0.58 forecast. The group also announced a 5% increase in its semi-annual dividend on 18 December.
Source: 2iQ Research
Looking at insider transaction activity, we think Cantel Medical shares are worth a closer look right now. We say this because since mid-January three directors, including President/CEO George Fotiades, have spent nearly €500,000 on stock. These purchases are the first director purchases in more than two years. Given the company’s good Q1 results, we see these insider purchases as a bullish signal.
Credit Acceptance Corp (CACC: US)
Credit Acceptance Corporation is a US financial services company that specialises in subprime automobile financing. The group offers financing programmes that enable automobile dealers to sell vehicles to consumers, regardless of their credit history. The company is listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market and currently has a market capitalisation of $8.6 billion.
Credit Acceptance shares have underperformed over the last six months, falling from around $490 to $460. One reason for this underperformance is that third-quarter results, issued in November, were disappointing with both revenue and earnings missing consensus expectations. Concerns in relation to deteriorating economic conditions have also impacted sentiment towards the stock.
Source: 2iQ Research
Examining insider transaction activity, we think it’s concerning that major shareholder Prescott General Partners has offloaded a large quantity of shares recently. According to our records, the investment firm has dumped nearly $75 million worth of CACC stock since the beginning of January. It’s also worth noting that CEO Brett Roberts sold $4.2 million worth of stock in November and Chief Legal Officer Charles Pearce sold $442,430 worth of stock in December. Overall, we think this selling activity is a bearish signal. With that in mind, we believe caution is warranted towards Credit Acceptance shares right now.