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Asana’s CEO Has Bought $1 Billion of Company Stock. It’s Likely the Largest Purchase Ever by a Corporate Insider.

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Asana co-founder and CEO Dustin Moskovitz has bought more than $1 billion worth of the company’s stock since last June.

Courtesy Asana

In what is likely the most aggressive run of insider stock purchases ever,


Asana

CEO and co-founder Dustin Moskovitz has bought more than $1 billion of the company’s stock since last June.

During the buying spree, which has picked up steam in recent weeks, Moskovitz purchased 15.8 million shares of Asana’s Class A stock for $1.02 billion, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The purchases represent about 16% of Asana’s Class A shares outstanding.

Ben Silverman, director of research at InsiderScore, which tracks stock activity from corporate insiders, says it appears to be the first time a single insider has bought $1 billion worth of stock in a non-buyout scenario. The firm’s data goes back to 2004.

Moskovitz, a


Facebook

co-founder, started Asana (ticker: ASAN) in 2008.

His latest string of purchases—exactly 7 million shares from Dec. 30 to Feb. 4 for more than $400 million—came in the wake of a sharp decline in Asana shares. The stock has rebounded in the last week.

Asana declined to discuss the stock price volatility and said that Moskovitz couldn’t comment on his purchases given a quiet period heading into the company’s earnings report on March 9.

According to SEC filings, all of the purchases since mid-2021 were made under a 10b5-1 trading plan, an automated program intended to keep executives from trading on insider information.

Moskovitz now holds 16.6 million of Asana’s Class A shares directly, plus another 4.1 million shares held in a trust account. That’s 21% of the company’s Class A stock. He also now holds 67.7 million Class B shares, or 76% of that outstanding class, which carry 10 votes each.

As of the company’s last proxy—and before the recent transactions—Moskovitz controlled more than 60% of the company’s vote.

Asana has a current market value of about $12.5 billion. The stock has had a wild ride since going public through a direct listing on the New York Stock Exchange in September 2020. It opened for trading at $21 and peaked at $145 in November 2021. But Asana shares have been hurt in the recent tech selloff, falling below $44 by late January.

The stock has surged in February, with a gain of more than 40% over the last six trading days alone. On Friday, the stock was up 3.6%, to $66.89.

Forbes estimates that Moskovitz has a net worth of $15.3 billion, most of that tied to an estimated 2% stake in Facebook parent Meta Platforms (FB). Moskovitz co-founded Facebook in 2004 with Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, and Chris Hughes. He served as the company’s first chief technology officer, before leaving in 2008 to form Asana with Justin Rosenstein, a Facebook engineer.

Write to Eric J. Savitz at eric.savitz@barrons.com

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