What Kind Of Shareholders Hold The Majority In Zynga Inc.'s (NASDAQ:ZNGA) Shares?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
December 17, 2020
NasdaqGS:ZNGA

If you want to know who really controls Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ:ZNGA), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Institutions will often hold stock in bigger companies, and we expect to see insiders owning a noticeable percentage of the smaller ones. 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.

Zynga is a pretty big company. It has a market capitalization of US$10b. Normally institutions would own a significant portion of a company this size. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems that institutions are noticeable on the share registry. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about Zynga.

See our latest analysis for Zynga

ownership-breakdown
NasdaqGS:ZNGA Ownership Breakdown December 17th 2020

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Zynga?

Institutions typically measure themselves against a benchmark when reporting to their own investors, so they often become more enthusiastic about a stock once it's included in a major index. We would expect most companies to have some institutions on the register, especially if they are growing.

Zynga already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. This suggests some credibility amongst professional investors. But we can't rely on that fact alone since institutions make bad investments sometimes, just like everyone does. 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 Zynga's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
NasdaqGS:ZNGA Earnings and Revenue Growth December 17th 2020

Institutional investors own over 50% of the company, so together than can probably strongly influence board decisions. Hedge funds don't have many shares in Zynga. The company's largest shareholder is The Vanguard Group, Inc., with ownership of 8.8%. In comparison, the second and third largest shareholders hold about 6.5% and 5.8% of the stock. Mark Pincus, who is the third-largest shareholder, also happens to hold the title of Chairman of the Board.

A closer look at our ownership figures suggests that the top 16 shareholders have a combined ownership of 50% implying that no single shareholder has a majority.

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. There are a reasonable number of analysts covering the stock, so it might be useful to find out their aggregate view on the future.

Insider Ownership Of Zynga

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. 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.

Our most recent data indicates that insiders own some shares in Zynga Inc.. Insiders own US$677m worth of shares (at current prices). I sometimes take an interest in whether they have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public, with a 16% stake in the company, will not easily be ignored. This size of ownership, while considerable, may not be enough to change company policy if the decision is not in sync with other large shareholders.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. Take risks for example - Zynga has 1 warning sign we think 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.

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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.
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