A look at the shareholders of Softronic AB (publ) (STO:SOF B) can tell us which group is most powerful. Institutions often own shares in more established companies, while it's not unusual to see insiders own a fair bit of 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.
With a market capitalization of kr1.3b, Softronic is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. Our analysis of the ownership of the company, below, shows that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. Let's delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about Softronic.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Softronic?
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.
As you can see, institutional investors have a fair amount of stake in Softronic. This can indicate that the company has a certain degree of credibility in the investment community. However, it is best to be wary of relying on the supposed validation that comes with institutional investors. They too, get it wrong sometimes. If multiple institutions change their view on a stock at the same time, you could see the share price drop fast. It's therefore worth looking at Softronic's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.
We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Softronic. AB Traction is currently the largest shareholder, with 22% of shares outstanding. In comparison, the second and third largest shareholders hold about 21% and 8.1% of the stock. Stig Martin, who is the third-largest shareholder, also happens to hold the title of Member of the Board of Directors.
To make our study more interesting, we found that the top 3 shareholders have a majority ownership in the company, meaning that they are powerful enough to influence the decisions of the company.
While studying institutional ownership for a company can add value to your research, it is also a good practice to research analyst recommendations to get a deeper understand of a stock's expected performance. Our information suggests that there isn't any analyst coverage of the stock, so it is probably little known.
Insider Ownership Of Softronic
The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. 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 Softronic AB (publ). It has a market capitalization of just kr1.3b, and insiders have kr417m worth of shares in their own names. We 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, who are usually individual investors, hold a 29% stake in Softronic. 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 Equity Ownership
With an ownership of 22%, private equity firms are in a position to play a role in shaping corporate strategy with a focus on value creation. Sometimes we see private equity stick around for the long term, but generally speaking they have a shorter investment horizon and -- as the name suggests -- don't invest in public companies much. After some time they may look to sell and redeploy capital elsewhere.
It's always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand Softronic better, we need to consider many other factors. Case in point: We've spotted 2 warning signs for Softronic you should be aware of.
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. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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.