Who Really Owns Matrix Composites & Engineering Ltd (ASX:MCE)?

I am going to take a deep dive into Matrix Composites & Engineering Ltd’s (ASX:MCE) most recent ownership structure, not a frequent subject of discussion among individual investors. Ownership structure of a company has been found to affect share performance over time. The same amount of capital coming from an activist institution and a passive mutual fund has different implications on corporate governance, which is a decisive factor for a long-term investor. It also impacts the trading environment of company shares, which is more of a concern for short-term investors. Therefore, it is beneficial for us to examine MCE’s ownership structure in more detail.

Check out our latest analysis for Matrix Composites & Engineering

ASX:MCE Ownership Summary August 19th 18
ASX:MCE Ownership Summary August 19th 18

Institutional Ownership

Institutions account for 38.22% of MCE’s outstanding shares, a significant enough holding to move stock prices if they start buying and selling in large quantities, especially when there are relatively small amounts of shares available on the market to trade. These moves, at least in the short-term, are generally observed in an institutional ownership mix comprising of active stock pickers, in particular levered hedge funds, which can cause large price swings. For shareholders in MCE, sharp price movements may not be a major concern as active hedge funds hold a relatively small stake in the company. Although this doesn’t necessarily lead to high short-term volatility, we should dig deeper into MCE’s ownership structure to find how the remaining owner types can affect its investment profile.

Insider Ownership

I find insiders are an important group of stakeholders, who are directly involved in making key decisions related to the use of capital. In essence, insider ownership is more about the alignment of shareholders’ interests with the management. A major group of owners of MCE is individual insiders, sitting with a hefty 27.07% stake in the company. Broadly, insider ownership of this level has been found to negatively affect companies with consistently low PE ratio (underperforming). And a positive impact has been seen on companies with a high PE ratio (outperforming). It may be interesting to take a look at what company insiders have been doing with their holdings lately. Insider buying may be a sign of upbeat future expectations, however, selling doesn’t necessarily mean the opposite as insiders may be motivated by their personal financial needs.

General Public Ownership

A big stake of 32.32% in MCE is held by the general public. This size of ownership gives retail investors collective power in deciding on major policy decisions such as executive compensation, appointment of directors and acquisitions of businesses.

Private Company Ownership

Another important group of owners for potential investors in MCE are private companies that hold a stake of 2.39% in MCE. These are companies that are mainly invested due to their strategic interests or are incentivized by reaping capital gains on investments their shareholdings. However, an ownership of this size may be relatively insignificant, meaning that these shareholders may not have the potential to influence MCE’s business strategy. Thus, investors not need worry too much about the consequences of these holdings.

Next Steps:

The company’s high institutional ownership makes margin of safety a very important consideration to existing investors since long bull and bear trends often emerge when these big-ticket investors see a change in long-term potential of the company. This will allow investors to reduce the impact of non-fundamental factors, such as volatile block trading impact on their portfolio value. However, if you are building an investment case for MCE, ownership structure alone should not dictate your decision to buy or sell the stock. Instead, you should be evaluating company-specific factors such as the intrinsic valuation, which is a key driver of Matrix Composites & Engineering’s share price. I urge you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for MCE’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for MCE’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has MCE been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of MCE’s historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.

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.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.