Every investor in SciDev Limited (ASX:SDV) 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. 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 AU$134m, SciDev is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. In the chart below, we can see that institutional investors have bought into the company. Let's delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about SciDev.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About SciDev?
Institutional investors commonly compare their own returns to the returns of a commonly followed index. So they generally do consider buying larger companies that are included in the relevant benchmark index.
SciDev already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in 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 SciDev's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.
Hedge funds don't have many shares in SciDev. Looking at our data, we can see that the largest shareholder is Perennial Value Management Limited with 14% of shares outstanding. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 7.7% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 3.6% by the third-largest shareholder. Lewis Utting, who is the third-largest shareholder, also happens to hold the title of Member of the Board of Directors.
After doing some more digging, we found that the top 19 have the combined ownership of 50% in the company, suggesting that no single shareholder has significant control over the company.
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. There is a little analyst coverage of the stock, but not much. So there is room for it to gain more coverage.
Insider Ownership Of SciDev
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. 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.
It seems insiders own a significant proportion of SciDev Limited. Insiders own AU$25m worth of shares in the AU$134m company. 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
With a 48% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over SciDev. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.
Private Company Ownership
Our data indicates that Private Companies hold 11%, of the company's shares. 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.
I find it very interesting to look at who exactly owns a company. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. For instance, we've identified 2 warning signs for SciDev that you should be aware of.
If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its future.
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.
When trading SciDev or any other investment, use the platform considered by many to be the Professional's Gateway to the Worlds Market, Interactive Brokers. You get the lowest-cost* trading on stocks, options, futures, forex, bonds and funds worldwide from a single integrated account.
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.
*Interactive Brokers Rated Lowest Cost Broker by StockBrokers.com Annual Online Review 2020
Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.