What Does Sportech PLC’s (LON:SPO) Ownership Structure Look Like?

In this article, I’m going to take a look at Sportech PLC’s (LSE:SPO) latest ownership structure, a non-fundamental factor which is important, but remains a less discussed subject among 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, I will take a look at SPO’s shareholders in more detail.

See our latest analysis for Sportech
LSE:SPO Ownership_summary May 9th 18
LSE:SPO Ownership_summary May 9th 18

Institutional Ownership

SPO’s 91.39% institutional ownership seems enough to cause large share price movements in the case of significant share sell-off or acquisitions by institutions, particularly when there is a low level of public shares available on the market to trade. However, as not all institutions are alike, such high volatility events, especially in the short-term, have been more frequently linked to active market participants like hedge funds. In the case of SPO, investors need not worry about such volatility considering active hedge funds don’t have a significant stake. However, we should dig deeper into SPO’s ownership structure and find out how other key ownership classes can affect its investment profile.

Insider Ownership

Insiders form another group of important ownership types as they manage the company’s operations and decide the best use of capital. Insider ownership has been linked to better alignment between management and shareholders. 22.59% ownership of SPO insiders is large enough to make an impact on shareholder returns. In general, this level of insider ownership has negatively affected underperforming (consistently low PE ratio) companies and positively affected the companies that outperform (consistently high PE ratio). Another aspect of insider ownership is to learn about their recent transactions. While insider buying is possibly a sign of a positive outlook for the company, selling doesn’t necessarily indicate a negative outlook as they may be selling to meet personal financial needs.

Private Company Ownership

Another group of owners that a potential investor in SPO should consider are private companies, with a stake of 0.021%. While they invest more often due to strategic interests, an investment can also be driven by capital gains through share price appreciation. However, an ownership of this size may be relatively insignificant, meaning that these shareholders may not have the potential to influence SPO’s business strategy. Thus, investors not need worry too much about the consequences of these holdings.

Next Steps:

SPO’s considerably high level of institutional ownership calls for further analysis into its margin of safety. This will enable shareholders to comfortably invest in the company while avoid getting trapped in a sustained sell-off that is often observed in stocks with this level of institutional participation. However, ownership structure should not be the only focus of your research when constructing an investment thesis around SPO. Rather, you should be looking at fundamental drivers such as Sportech’s past track record and financial health. I highly recommend you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for SPO’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for SPO’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has SPO 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 SPO’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.