How Much Of Vodafone Group Plc (LON:VOD) Do Institutions Own?

Every investor in Vodafone Group Plc (LON:VOD) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. Generally speaking, as a company grows, institutions will increase their ownership. Conversely, insiders often decrease their ownership over time. We also tend to see lower insider ownership in companies that were previously publicly owned.

Vodafone Group is a pretty big company. It has a market capitalization of UK£41b. Normally institutions would own a significant portion of a company this size. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it’s seems that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about Vodafone Group.

Check out our latest analysis for Vodafone Group

LSE:VOD Ownership Summary, January 23rd 2020
LSE:VOD Ownership Summary, January 23rd 2020

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Vodafone Group?

Institutions typically measure themselves against a benchmark when reporting to their own investors, so they often become more enthusiastic about a stock once it’s included in a major index. We would expect most companies to have some institutions on the register, especially if they are growing.

Vodafone Group already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own 82% of the company. This suggests some credibility amongst professional investors. But we can’t rely on that fact alone, since institutions make bad investments sometimes, just like everyone does. If multiple institutions change their view on a stock at the same time, you could see the share price drop fast. It’s therefore worth looking at Vodafone Group’s earnings history, below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

LSE:VOD Income Statement, January 23rd 2020
LSE:VOD Income Statement, January 23rd 2020

Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. Vodafone Group is not owned by hedge funds. BlackRock, Inc. is currently the company’s largest shareholder with 7.1% of shares outstanding. The Vanguard Group, Inc. is the second largest shareholder with 3.7% of common stock, followed by Franklin Resources, Inc., holding 3.1% of the stock.

A deeper look at our ownership data shows that the top 22 shareholders collectively hold less than 50% of the register, suggesting a large group of small holders where no one share holder has a majority.

While it makes sense to study institutional ownership data for a company, it also makes sense to study analyst sentiments to know which way the wind is blowing. There are a reasonable number of analysts covering the stock, so it might be useful to find out their aggregate view on the future.

Insider Ownership Of Vodafone Group

The definition of company insiders can be subjective, and does vary between jurisdictions. Our data reflects individual insiders, capturing board members at the very least. Company management run the business, but the CEO will answer to the board, even if he or she is a member of it.

I generally consider insider ownership to be a good thing. However, on some occasions it makes it more difficult for other shareholders to hold the board accountable for decisions.

Our information suggests that Vodafone Group Plc insiders own under 1% of the company. Being so large, we would not expect insiders to own a large proportion of the stock. Collectively, they own UK£44m of stock. It is good to see board members owning shares, but it might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying.

General Public Ownership

The general public holds a 17% stake in VOD. While this size of ownership may not be enough to sway a policy decision in their favour, they can still make a collective impact on company policies.

Next Steps:

It’s always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand Vodafone Group better, we need to consider many other factors. Case in point: We’ve spotted 3 warning signs for Vodafone Group you should be aware of, and 1 of them is a bit concerning.

Ultimately the future is most important. You can access this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

NB: Figures in this article are calculated using data from the last twelve months, which refer to the 12-month period ending on the last date of the month the financial statement is dated. This may not be consistent with full year annual report figures.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

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