Big Sale at Ingles: Namesake of “Laura Lynn” Brand Sells Her Remaining Shares of Company Stock

Written by Peter H. Lewis, Asheville Watchdog

There’s a big sale going on at Ingles.

Laura Lynn Ingle Sharp, a member of the board of directors at Ingles Markets, the Black Mountain-based grocery store chain founded by her father Robert Ingle, has sold all of her remaining shares in the company, according to documents filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Ingle Sharp, the namesake of the Ingles stores’ “Laura Lynn” brand and an Atlanta resident, began this year owning approximately 42,700 shares of Ingles Class A common stock, according to a company proxy filing, but in recent months has sold all of them. The final disposal of her remaining shares was reported to the S.E.C. on Thursday, a sale of 5,901 shares for a total of $401,408.44.

The final sale was first reported by Business North Carolina.

Ingle Sharp’s brother, Robert P. “Bobby” Ingle II, is chairman of the board, and controls 72 percent of the company’s voting power, an S.E.C. proxy shows. In contrast, Laura Ingle Sharp has less than 1 percent of the voting power.

She regularly sold shares of Ingles stock that she acquired in 1987 — selling more than $7 million worth since 2019, according to S.E.C. filings — but the disposal of her remaining shares in the past six months is noteworthy.

Asheville Watchdog contacted the corporate office of Ingles Markets for comment Wednesday, inquiring why Ingle Sharp has disposed of nearly all her remaining shares in such a short period, but did not hear back from the company by deadline.

Ingle Sharp reported a sale of 4,799 shares June 24, at an average price of $70.38 per share, for a total of $337,753.

Earlier this month, Ingle Sharp sold two other tranches of her remaining Ingles stock. On June 10 she sold 6,000 shares, netting approximately $421,490, and the following day she sold another 4,000 shares, netting $281,516.

In March she also sold blocks of 4,000 and 2,000 shares, cashing out an estimated $457,000.

Ingles’ sales last year totaled nearly $5.9 billion. As reported by The Watchdog in April, Bobby Ingle’s compensation more than doubled to nearly $8 million in 2023 from $3.7 million in 2021.

Ingles Markets is the dominant grocery chain in the region with 18 stores in Buncombe County, almost as many as all other grocery stores combined. The company operates 198 grocery stores throughout the region.

Asheville Watchdog is a nonprofit news team producing stories that matter to Asheville and Buncombe County. Peter H. Lewis is The Watchdog’s executive editor and a former assistant financial editor at The New York Times. Contact him at [email protected]. To show your support for this vital public service go to