Why Alpine Immune Sciences Inc’s (NASDAQ:ALPN) Ownership Structure Is Important

In this article, I’m going to take a look at Alpine Immune Sciences Inc’s (NASDAQ:ALPN) latest ownership structure, a non-fundamental factor which is important, but remains a less discussed subject among investors. Ownership structure has been found to have an impact on shareholder returns in both short- and long-term. 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. Now I will analyze ALPN’s shareholder registry in more detail.

View our latest analysis for Alpine Immune Sciences

NasdaqGM:ALPN Ownership Summary August 15th 18
NasdaqGM:ALPN Ownership Summary August 15th 18

Institutional Ownership

In ALPN’s case, institutional ownership stands at 10.73%, significant enough to cause considerable price moves in the case of large institutional transactions, especially 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. Considering hedge funds hold a stake of 6.59% in the company, ALPN shares may experience high short-term volatility as this class of institutions are frequently found to sell significantly during market-wide shocks. We should dig deeper into the company’s ownership structure to find how the rest of its ownership structure can impact its investment case.

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. Although individuals in ALPN hold only a minor stake, it’s a good sign for shareholders as the company’s executives and directors have their incentives directly linked to the company’s performance. I will also like to check what insiders have been doing recently with their holdings. 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 14.72% in ALPN is held by the general public. This level of ownership gives retail investors the power to sway key policy decisions such as board composition, executive compensation, and potential acquisitions. This is a positive sign for an investor who wants to be involved in key decision-making of the company.

Private Equity Ownership

With an ownership of 67.15%, private equity firms are a major stakeholder in ALPN and are in a position to play an important role in shaping up corporate strategy with a focus on value creation. An investor should be encouraged by the ownership of these institutions who are known to be experts in increasing efficiency, improving capital structure and opting for value-accretive policy decisions.

Next Steps:

I suggest investors seek some degree of margin of safety due to high institutional ownership in ALPN, in particular due to the strong presence of active hedge fund investors. This is to 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 determining factor when you’re building an investment thesis for ALPN. Rather, you should be examining fundamental factors such as Alpine Immune Sciences’s past track record and financial health. 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 ALPN’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for ALPN’s outlook.
  2. Financial Health: Are ALPN’s operations financially sustainable? Balance sheets can be hard to analyze, which is why we’ve done it for you. Check out our financial health checks here.
  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.