What Kind Of Shareholder Appears On The Eton Pharmaceuticals, Inc.’s (NASDAQ:ETON) Shareholder Register?

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The big shareholder groups in Eton Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ETON) have power over the company. Institutions will often hold stock in bigger companies, and we expect to see insiders owning a noticeable percentage of the smaller ones. 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 US$123m, Eton Pharmaceuticals is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. In the chart below below, we can see that institutional investors have not yet purchased much of the company. Let’s delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about ETON.

View our latest analysis for Eton Pharmaceuticals

NasdaqGM:ETON Ownership Summary, July 16th 2019
NasdaqGM:ETON Ownership Summary, July 16th 2019

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Eton Pharmaceuticals?

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.

Since institutions own under 5% of Eton Pharmaceuticals, many may not have spent much time considering the stock. But it’s clear that some have; and they liked it enough to buy in. So if the company itself can improve over time, we may well see more institutional buyers in the future. When multiple institutional investors want to buy shares, we often see a rising share price. The past revenue trajectory (shown below) can be an indication of future growth, but there are no guarantees.

NasdaqGM:ETON Income Statement, July 16th 2019
NasdaqGM:ETON Income Statement, July 16th 2019

It would appear that 5.0% of Eton Pharmaceuticals shares are controlled by hedge funds. That worth noting, since hedge funds are often quite active investors, who may try to influence management. Many want to see value creation (and a higher share price) in the short term or medium term. 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 Eton Pharmaceuticals

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. Management ultimately answers to the board. However, it is not uncommon for managers to be executive board members, especially if they are a founder or the CEO.

Most consider insider ownership a positive because it can indicate the board is well aligned with other shareholders. However, on some occasions too much power is concentrated within this group.

Our information suggests that insiders maintain a significant holding in Eton Pharmaceuticals, Inc.. Insiders have a US$22m stake in this US$123m business. It is great to see insiders so invested in the business. It might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying recently.

General Public Ownership

The general public, who are mostly retail investors, collectively hold 53% of Eton Pharmaceuticals shares. This size of ownership gives retail investors collective power. They can and probably do influence decisions on executive compensation, dividend policies and proposed business acquisitions.

Public Company Ownership

Public companies currently own 20% of ETON stock. This may be a strategic interest and the two companies may have related business interests. It could be that they have de-merged. This holding is probably worth investigating further.

Next Steps:

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.

I like to dive deeper into how a company has performed in the past. You can find historic revenue and earnings in this detailed graph.

Ultimately the future is most important. You can access this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.