A look at the shareholders of 21Vianet Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:VNET) can tell us which group is most powerful. 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.
21Vianet Group has a market capitalization of US$3.0b, so it's too big to fly under the radar. We'd expect to see both institutions and retail investors owning a portion of the company. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems that institutional investors have bought into the company. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about 21Vianet Group.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About 21Vianet Group?
Many institutions measure their performance against an index that approximates the local market. So they usually pay more attention to companies that are included in major indices.
21Vianet Group already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. 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. When multiple institutions own a stock, there's always a risk that they are in a 'crowded trade'. When such a trade goes wrong, multiple parties may compete to sell stock fast. This risk is higher in a company without a history of growth. You can see 21Vianet Group's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.
21Vianet Group is not owned by hedge funds. Tus-Holdings Co., Ltd. is currently the largest shareholder, with 18% of shares outstanding. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 6.3% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 6.0% by the third-largest shareholder. Sheng Chen, who is the third-largest shareholder, also happens to hold the title of Chairman of the Board.
We did some more digging and found that 9 of the top shareholders account for roughly 51% of the register, implying that along with larger shareholders, there are a few smaller shareholders, thereby balancing out each others interests somewhat.
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. Quite a few analysts cover the stock, so you could look into forecast growth quite easily.
Insider Ownership Of 21Vianet Group
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. 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.
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.
I can report that insiders do own shares in 21Vianet Group, Inc.. The insiders have a meaningful stake worth US$192m. Most would see this as a real positive. If you would like to explore the question of insider alignment, you can click here to see if insiders have been buying or selling.
General Public Ownership
The general public holds a 20% stake in 21Vianet Group. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.
Private Company Ownership
Our data indicates that Private Companies hold 18%, of the company's shares. It's hard to draw any conclusions from this fact alone, so its worth looking into who owns those private companies. Sometimes insiders or other related parties have an interest in shares in a public company through a separate private company.
Public Company Ownership
It appears to us that public companies own 4.5% of 21Vianet Group. It's hard to say for sure but this suggests they have entwined business interests. This might be a strategic stake, so it's worth watching this space for changes in ownership.
While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. To that end, you should be aware of the 1 warning sign we've spotted with 21Vianet Group .
But ultimately it is the future, not the past, that will determine how well the owners of this business will do. Therefore we think it advisable to take a look at this free report showing whether analysts are predicting a brighter 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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