Ripples of enthusiasm echoed in the Luminar Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: LAZR) shareholder community after CEO and founder Austin Russell purchased $21.3 million worth of stocks. This move was not the result of blind gusto, but rather it reflects Russell’s confidence in LAZR’s expansion, which is reliant on its two new facilities. Given the timing of the purchases, news regarding LAZR might be on the horizon, which might trigger a short squeeze considering LAZR stock’s high short interest.
LAZR Stock News
Russell’s mass purchase of LAZR stock comes on the heels of news regarding expansion. Recently, LAZR announced a strategic partnership with TPK in order to create a new facility, and its Monterrey facility became operational earlier than expected and started deliveries. It is highly likely that the reason behind the purchases is related to LAZR’s efforts to expand production and reach.
LAZR is a leading lidar manufacturer that has worked with notable car manufacturers such as Tesla Inc (Nasdaq: TSLA), Mercedes Benz, Polestar (NASDAQ: PSNY), and Volvo. Its sensors are considered top-of-the-line products that are desired by many leading automakers. It is for that reason that LAZR is not likely to experience any shortage in demand anytime soon.
Thanks to its partnership with Celestica, LAZR was able to run a new facility in Monterrey, Mexico. According to Its guidance, the Monterrey facility was supposed to start operating in Q2 2023, however, it beat its guidance by starting its operations in Q1 Additionally, it can be expanded to increase capacity by up to 500 thousand sensors a year, and it was built with a 40 thousand square foot clean room in order to suit ISO standards that would help in exportation.
LAZR is targeting an expansion into Asia and has formed a partnership with TPK – a multi-billion dollar supplier with many connections in East Asia – to construct a new facility in China. This facility will grant LAZR access to the Chinese market, which is extremely vast. For reference, Chinese car manufacturers produced 27 million cars in 2022 and that figure is projected to grow by 3.8% year over year. With access to the Chinese market, LAZR can expect an increase in production orders and a litany of new clients.
Considering TPK’s connections in the region, the Asian supplier might assist LAZR in its expansion efforts by introducing the company to new car manufacturers as well as helping the company with supply chain issues.
These expansive endeavors are the cornerstone of LAZR’s progress since they provide LAZR with more room to accept additional contracts and increase reach substantially. Russell’s mass purchase of LAZR stock is likely due to those endeavors. For example, he may have made the mass purchase due to a contract that will utilize the Monterey facility, in which case it is likely that Volvo commissioned more sensors for Polestar amidst its efforts to increase production. The mass purchase could also be due to news regarding the TPK-LAZR facility that was just announced as a facility may have been procured in China. In either case, the LAZR stock forecast appears to be promising.
On that note, Russell’s recent purchase may trigger a short squeeze for LAZR stock considering its high short data. With a short interest of 27.9% and 44.3% of its float on loan, LAZR stock appears to be a prime short squeeze candidate, especially if the company announces news regarding new deals or the China facility soon.
LAZR Stock Financials
According to its latest Q1 report, LAZR’s total assets decreased from $687 million in Q4 2022 to $658 million in Q1 2023. That said, its cash balance increased from $69 million to $89 million. On the other hand, LAZR’s liabilities increased from $714 million to $740 million.
Revenue increased YoY from $6 million to $14 million in Q1. Total operating expenses also increased from $82 million to $141 million. For that reason, LAZR reported a net loss of $146 million in Q1 – an increase from $88 million last year.
@Maximus_Holla is watching LAZR’s CEO’s insider buys closely.
@thisisorlando is excited about Russell’s recent purchases.
LAZR is in a neutral trend, with the stock trading in a sideways channel between the support at $5.47, and the resistance at $6.45 above the 200 MA. The stock is also above its 50 MA but below the 21 MA. The MACD is approaching a bullish crossover and the RSI is neutral at 47.
Given Russell’s recent purchase, LAZR stock could prove to be a profitable buy at its current support, due to the high likelihood of upcoming news. That said, LAZR stock has a high short interest of 28%, which could be squeezed due to the aforementioned likelihood of potential news. A possible play could be going long at the current support in anticipation of upcoming news.
LAZR Stock Forecast
LAZR’s CEO Austin Russell recently purchased $21.3 million worth of LAZR stock. The reason behind it may be a new upcoming deal or additional news regarding the China facility that would expand LAZR’s production and reach. That said, LAZR stock is highly shorted and a short squeeze may be imminent thanks to Russell’s recent purchase.
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