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Tech Industry

Amazon director nets $1.5 million in stock sale

Board member Tom Alberg sold 130,000 shares of the e-tailer's stock in the last two weeks for about $1.5 million, according to an SEC filing.

    Amazon.com board member Tom Alberg sold 130,000 shares of the e-tailer's stock in the last two weeks for about $1.5 million, according to a regulatory filing.

    Alberg sold shares in six separate transactions beginning Feb. 21 and ending Feb. 28, according to a report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission last week. He sold his holdings for an average price of $11.79 a share.

    Although the sales are something to be concerned about, they are not "alarming," said Jeetil Patel, a financial analyst who covers Seattle-based Amazon for Deutsche Banc Alex Brown.

    "Anytime anyone sells stock, a flag goes up. You've got to wonder what's going on," Patel said.

    Alberg did not return calls seeking comment. Amazon spokesman Bill Curry declined to comment on the sales, saying, "that's his business."

    The sales do not appear to be part of a regular pattern of sales by Alberg. The last time Alberg traded shares of Amazon stock was last May, when he exercised 170,000 options, according to Insiderscores.com, which monitors insider trading. In November 1999, Alberg exercised 450,000 Amazon stock options.

    Last month, Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos sold 800,000 shares of stock in the e-tail giant, earning about $11.7 million. Meanwhile, Amazon Chief Information Officer Rick Dalzell exercised about 25,000 stock options in the company, netting more than $323,000.

    The insider trades come as Amazon's stock has plummeted in recent months. Although the stock was up more than $2 in afternoon trading on Monday, Amazon's shares are within shouting distance of the company's 52-week low of $9.56 a share. The company's shares have lost about 22 percent of their value since Feb. 1 and more than 66 percent of its value since Nov. 1.

    Alberg held about 1.37 million shares of the Seattle-based company's stock as of last March, according to Amazon's proxy statement, and 1.3 million as of his May trades, according to Insiderscores.com. His current position in Amazon could not be confirmed.

    Alberg, who is managing director of Madrona Venture Group, has served on Amazon's board since June 1996.