Former Bruker Corp. (NSDQ:BRKR) executive Dirk Laukien and his half-brother Joerg Laukien — both directors at the Billerica, Mass.-based scientific instruments maker — late last week cashed in on another portion of their still-sizable stakes, each selling just under 540,000 shares of Bruker stock.
The Sept. 10 transactions went out at $13.27 a share, producing a combined $14.3 million in gross proceeds for the siblings.
Based on his stock ownership reports, Dirk Laukien still owns about 17.7 million shares, down from around 20.2 million shares at the start of the year. He let go of 2 million shares in early March, pocketing $25.9 million from that sale. Late last year he dealt another 2 million shares priced at $10.67 per share, for a total of $21.3 million. Overall, he’s now sold nearly 10.7 shares since 2002, generating about $78 million in gross proceeds.
Laukien, 45, stepped back from full-time work at Bruker in February, becoming a senior scientific fellow at the firm after an 11-year stint as president or co-president of Bruker’s BioSpin units. In recent years, he increasingly has focused on real estate investment in the greater Houston region, forming Black Forest Ventures LLC, a finance and management company in The Woodlands, Texas, that has interests in commercial and residential properties, restaurants and aviation facilities. He also was the sole bidder in July for the former corporate headquarters of indicted financier R. Allen Stanford, acquiring the 186,000-square-foot office tower for $12.5 million in cash.
Joerg Laukien, 56, is COO of Biospin’s European operations and owns slightly less than 20 million Bruker shares. Until now, he has been an acquirer of Bruker shares since Bruker Biospin was absorbed into the company in February 2008, buying about 11,000 shares in May and 100,000 shares through a pair of transactions in November 2008.
Dirk and Joerg aren’t the only Laukiens who have made a pretty penny via their Bruke stakes. Dirk and Marc Laukien, their mother Isolde Laukien-Kleiner and various other family members have been steadily reducing their individual stakes in Bruker in recent years. The family sold a combined 22.4 million shares through a pair of secondary offerings in early 2007 and in 2004 and have also used private stock sales and a 2006 merger with Bruker Optics to cash out sizable portions of their holdings.
Bruker CEO Frank Laukien, however, has instead spent just under $6 million to buy up nearly 1.5 million shares since Bruker stock bottomed out at $3.37 a share on Nov. 20, 2008. In March 2009 he upped his stake in the firm to about 23 percent in a series of stock buys.