To get a sense of who is truly in control of Eagers Automotive Limited (ASX:APE), it is important to understand the ownership structure of the business. With 42% stake, individual investors possess the maximum shares in the company. That is, the group stands to benefit the most if the stock rises (or lose the most if there is a downturn).
And private companies on the other hand have a 31% ownership in the company.
In the chart below, we zoom in on the different ownership groups of Eagers Automotive.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Eagers Automotive?
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.
We can see that Eagers Automotive does have institutional investors; and they hold a good portion of the company's stock. This implies the analysts working for those institutions have looked at the stock and they like it. But just like anyone else, they could be wrong. 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 Eagers Automotive's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.
Eagers Automotive is not owned by hedge funds. WFM Motors Pty Ltd is currently the company's largest shareholder with 27% of shares outstanding. In comparison, the second and third largest shareholders hold about 4.9% and 3.9% of the stock.
A closer look at our ownership figures suggests that the top 12 shareholders have a combined ownership of 51% implying that no single shareholder has a majority.
Researching institutional ownership is a good way to gauge and filter a stock's expected performance. The same can be achieved by studying analyst sentiments. 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 Eagers Automotive
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.
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 most recent data indicates that insiders own some shares in Eagers Automotive Limited. The insiders have a meaningful stake worth AU$290m. Most would see this as a real positive. Most would say this shows alignment of interests between shareholders and the board. Still, it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.
General Public Ownership
The general public-- including retail investors -- own 42% stake in the company, and hence can't easily be ignored. 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 31%, 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.
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. Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We've identified 3 warning signs with Eagers Automotive (at least 1 which is a bit concerning) , and understanding them should be part of your investment process.
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.
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This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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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