The big shareholder groups in Walkabout Resources Limited (ASX:WKT) have power over the company. Large companies usually have institutions as shareholders, and we usually see insiders owning shares in smaller companies. I quite like to see at least a little bit of insider ownership. As Charlie Munger said ‘Show me the incentive and I will show you the outcome.
Walkabout Resources is a smaller company with a market capitalization of AU$38m, so it may still be flying under the radar of many institutional investors. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions are not on the share registry. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about Walkabout Resources.
What Does The Lack Of Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Walkabout Resources?
Small companies that are not very actively traded often lack institutional investors, but it’s less common to see large companies without them.
There are multiple explanations for why institutions don’t own a stock. The most common is that the company is too small relative to funds under management, so the institution does not bother to look closely at the company. On the other hand, it’s always possible that professional investors are avoiding a company because they don’t think it’s the best place for their money. Walkabout Resources’s earnings and revenue track record (below) may not be compelling to institutional investors — or they simply might not have looked at the business closely.
Hedge funds don’t have many shares in Walkabout Resources. The company’s largest shareholder is Hong Kong Tiande Baorun Trade Company Limited, with ownership of 6.6%, The second and third largest shareholders are Michael Elliott and Claudio Marcolongo, holding 4.0% and 3.6%, respectively.
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.
Researching institutional ownership is a good way to gauge and filter a stock’s expected performance. The same can be achieved by studying analyst sentiments. We’re not picking up on any analyst coverage of the stock at the moment, so the company is unlikely to be widely held.
Insider Ownership Of Walkabout Resources
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. The company management answer to the board; and the latter should represent the interests of shareholders. Notably, sometimes top-level managers are on the board, themselves.
Insider ownership is positive when it signals leadership are thinking like the true owners of the company. However, high insider ownership can also give immense power to a small group within the company. This can be negative in some circumstances.
Our most recent data indicates that insiders own a reasonable proportion of Walkabout Resources Limited. It has a market capitalization of just AU$38m, and insiders have AU$7.5m worth of shares in their own names. I would say this shows alignment with shareholders, but it is worth noting that the company is still quite small; some insiders may have founded the business. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.
General Public Ownership
The general public, mostly retail investors, hold a substantial 68% stake in WKT, suggesting it is a fairly popular stock. This size of ownership gives retail investors collective power. They can and probably do influence decisions on executive compensation, dividend policies and proposed business acquisitions.
Private Company Ownership
We can see that Private Companies own 12%, of the shares on issue. It might be worth looking deeper into this. If related parties, such as insiders, have an interest in one of these private companies, that should be disclosed in the annual report. Private companies may also have a strategic interest in the company.
It’s always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand Walkabout Resources better, we need to consider many other factors. To that end, you should learn about the 7 warning signs we’ve spotted with Walkabout Resources (including 3 which is make us uncomfortable) .
Of course this may not be the best stock to buy. Therefore, you may wish to see our free collection of interesting prospects boasting favorable financials.
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.
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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. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.