Shares of Acacia Research Group (ACTG), the patent licensing company run by Executive Chairman G. Louis Graziadio, gained 14% on Thursday, Sept. 1, just days after the financier and entities controlled by him, bought more shares of the struggling company.
Shares of Newport Beach, California-based Acacia jumped 14% or 84 cents to $6.82 in trading on Thursday, giving the company a market value of $343.6 million. The shares have traded between $2.82 and $10.63 over the past year.
In a Sept. 1 Form 4 filing Graziadio disclosed that on Aug. 30 the Graziadio Family Trust acquired 16,389 shares of Acacia at a price of $5.8873, increasing the number of shares it held to 235,070. The Gina-Carra Partnership acquired 5,000 shares at the same price, bringing its Acacia holdings to 10,000. The George & Reva Graziadio Foundation also acquired 5,000 shares at the same price bringing its total to 10,000. The Graziadio Charitable Lead Annuity Trust acquired 5,000 shares at the same price, increasing its total to 15,000.
Finally, on the same day, Graziadio directly bought 7,500 shares at the same price bringing his total to 424,267. His wife also owns 2,500 Acacia shares, and his daughter and son each own 10,000 shares.
All told, Graziadio and his family’s stake in Acacia is currently worth $4.9 million.
Former Acacia executives have said Graziadio is behind a change in strategy and leadership at Acacia, driven by the board’s dissatisfaction with the company’s struggling patent licensing business.
Indeed, Graziadio, who was appointed executive chairman last month, is said to have been behind an effort on the board to force out former CEO Matt Vella and former Executive Chairman Robert “Chip” Harris after the company suffered a huge loss in an enforcement action against Alcatel-Lucent in December.
Graziadio’s strategy calls for the company to use some of its $156 million in cash to acquire or invest in pre-IPO businesses. Last month, the company agreed to invest up to $50 million in Veritone Inc., a provider of cloud-based Artificial Intelligence media technology. Graziadio also was appointed to the Veritone board
Acacia also said it had formed a strategic partnership with Veritone to leverage Acacia’s IP expertise to help Veritone build its patent portfolio and execute upon its overall intellectual property strategy.
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