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Could The SGOCO Group, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SGOC) Ownership Structure Tell Us Something Useful?

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·4 min read
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If you want to know who really controls SGOCO Group, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SGOC), then you'll have to look at the makeup of its share registry. Large companies usually have institutions as shareholders, and we usually see insiders owning shares in 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.

SGOCO Group is a smaller company with a market capitalization of US$196m, so it may still be flying under the radar of many institutional investors. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems that institutions are not on the share registry. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about SGOCO Group.

See our latest analysis for SGOCO Group

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Lack Of Institutional Ownership Tell Us About SGOCO Group?

Small companies that are not very actively traded often lack institutional investors, but it's less common to see large companies without them.

There are many reasons why a company might not have any institutions on the share registry. It may be hard for institutions to buy large amounts of shares, if liquidity (the amount of shares traded each day) is low. If the company has not needed to raise capital, institutions might lack the opportunity to build a position. Alternatively, there might be something about the company that has kept institutional investors away. Institutional investors may not find the historic growth of the business impressive, or there might be other factors at play. You can see the past revenue performance of SGOCO Group, for yourself, below.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

SGOCO Group is not owned by hedge funds. Looking at our data, we can see that the largest shareholder is Kai Kai Kwok with 29% of shares outstanding. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 23% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 16% by the third-largest shareholder. Furthermore, CEO Lau Siu is the owner of 1.0% of the company's shares.

A more detailed study of the shareholder registry showed us that 2 of the top shareholders have a considerable amount of ownership in the company, via their 52% stake.

While it makes sense to study institutional ownership data for a company, it also makes sense to study analyst sentiments to know which way the wind is blowing. Our information suggests that there isn't any analyst coverage of the stock, so it is probably little known.

Insider Ownership Of SGOCO Group

While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. 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.

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 own more than half of SGOCO Group, Ltd.. This gives them effective control of the company. So they have a US$137m stake in this US$196m business. Most would be pleased to see the board is investing alongside them. You may wish todiscover (for free) if they have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public, with a 30% 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:

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. For example, we've discovered 4 warning signs for SGOCO Group (1 doesn't sit too well with us!) that you should be aware of before investing here.

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.

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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.