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Institutions along with individual investors who hold considerable shares inChampion Iron Limited (ASX:CIA) come under pressure; lose 3.3% of holdings value

·5 min read

To get a sense of who is truly in control of Champion Iron Limited (ASX:CIA), it is important to understand the ownership structure of the business. And the group that holds the biggest piece of the pie are individual investors with 42% ownership. In other words, the group stands to gain the most (or lose the most) from their investment into the company.

While institutions who own 21% came under pressure after market cap dropped to AU$2.7b last week,individual investors took the most losses.

In the chart below, we zoom in on the different ownership groups of Champion Iron.

View our latest analysis for Champion Iron

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Champion Iron?

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.

Champion Iron 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 Champion Iron's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.

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

We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Champion Iron. Because actions speak louder than words, we consider it a good sign when insiders own a significant stake in a company. In Champion Iron's case, its Top Key Executive, William O’Keeffe, is the largest shareholder, holding 8.7% of shares outstanding. With 8.4% and 8.1% of the shares outstanding respectively, Investissement Québec, Investment Arm and WC Strategic Opportunity, L.P. are the second and third largest shareholders.

A closer look at our ownership figures suggests that the top 16 shareholders have a combined ownership of 50% implying that no single shareholder has a majority.

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. There are plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.

Insider Ownership Of Champion Iron

While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. Company management run the business, but the CEO will answer to the board, even if he or she is a member of it.

Insider ownership is positive when it signals leadership are thinking like the true owners of the company. However, high insider ownership can also give immense power to a small group within the company. This can be negative in some circumstances.

Our information suggests that insiders maintain a significant holding in Champion Iron Limited. Insiders own AU$331m worth of shares in the AU$2.7b company. That's quite meaningful. Most would say this shows a good degree of alignment with shareholders, especially in a company of this size. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or 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 size of ownership may not be enough to sway a policy decision in their favour, they can still make a collective impact on company policies.

Private Equity Ownership

Private equity firms hold a 8.4% stake in Champion Iron. This suggests they can be influential in key policy decisions. Sometimes we see private equity stick around for the long term, but generally speaking they have a shorter investment horizon and -- as the name suggests -- don't invest in public companies much. After some time they may look to sell and redeploy capital elsewhere.

Private Company Ownership

Our data indicates that Private Companies hold 15%, of the company's shares. It might be worth looking deeper into this. If related parties, such as insiders, have an interest in one of these private companies, that should be disclosed in the annual report. Private companies may also have a strategic interest in the company.

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. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 3 warning signs for Champion Iron (of which 1 can't be ignored!) you should know about.

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.

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

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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