Every investor in ClearOne, Inc. (NASDAQ:CLRO) should be aware of the most powerful shareholder groups. Institutions will often hold stock in bigger companies, and we expect to see insiders owning a noticeable percentage of the smaller ones. Warren Buffett said that he likes ‘a business with enduring competitive advantages that is run by able and owner-oriented people’. So it’s nice to see some insider ownership, because it may suggest that management is owner-oriented.
With a market capitalization of US$33m, ClearOne is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it’s seems that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. Let’s take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholder can tell us about ClearOne.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About ClearOne?
Many institutions measure their performance against an index that approximates the local market. So they usually pay more attention to companies that are included in major indices.
ClearOne already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own 5.2% of the company. This implies the analysts working for those institutions have looked at the stock and they like it. But just like anyone else, they could be wrong. When multiple institutions own a stock, there’s always a risk that they are in a ‘crowded trade’. When such a trade goes wrong, multiple parties may compete to sell stock fast. This risk is higher in a company without a history of growth. You can see ClearOne’s historic earnings and revenue, below, but keep in mind there’s always more to the story.
We note that hedge funds don’t have a meaningful investment in ClearOne. Looking at our data, we can see that the largest shareholder is Edward Bagley with 47% of shares outstanding. The second and third largest shareholders are Bla Investment Irrevocable Trust and Bryan Bagley, holding 14% and 9.5%, respectively.
Additionally, we found that 2 of the top shareholders have a considerable amount of ownership in the company, via their 60% stake.
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. As far I can tell there isn’t analyst coverage of the company, so it is probably flying under the radar.
Insider Ownership Of ClearOne
The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. Management ultimately answers to the board. However, it is not uncommon for managers to be executive board members, especially if they are a founder or the CEO.
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 information suggests that insiders own more than half of ClearOne, Inc.. This gives them effective control of the company. Given it has a market cap of US$33m, that means they have US$20m worth of shares. It is good to see this level of investment. You can check here to see if those insiders have been buying recently.
General Public Ownership
The general public holds a 20% stake in CLRO. 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.
Private Company Ownership
Our data indicates that Private Companies hold 14%, of the company’s shares. It’s hard to draw any conclusions from this fact alone, so its worth looking into who owns those private companies. Sometimes insiders or other related parties have an interest in shares in a public company through a separate private company.
While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. For instance, we’ve identified 3 warning signs for ClearOne (2 are concerning) that you should be aware of.
Of course this may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free free list of interesting companies.
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 email@example.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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