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What Kind Of Shareholder Appears On The Autolus Therapeutics plc's (NASDAQ:AUTL) Shareholder Register?

Simply Wall St

The big shareholder groups in Autolus Therapeutics plc (NASDAQ:AUTL) have power over the company. Institutions often own shares in more established companies, while it's not unusual to see insiders own a fair bit of smaller companies. 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.

Autolus Therapeutics is not a large company by global standards. It has a market capitalization of US$530m, which means it wouldn't have the attention of many institutional investors. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it's seems that institutional investors have bought into the company. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about AUTL.

View our latest analysis for Autolus Therapeutics

NasdaqGS:AUTL Ownership Summary, November 18th 2019

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Autolus Therapeutics?

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.

Autolus Therapeutics already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own 57% of the company. 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. If multiple institutions change their view on a stock at the same time, you could see the share price drop fast. It's therefore worth looking at Autolus Therapeutics's earnings history, below. Of course, the future is what really matters.

NasdaqGS:AUTL Income Statement, November 18th 2019

Institutional investors own over 50% of the company, so together than can probably strongly influence board decisions. Hedge funds don't have many shares in Autolus Therapeutics. 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 Autolus Therapeutics

The definition of company insiders can be subjective, and does vary between jurisdictions. Our data reflects individual insiders, capturing board members at the very least. 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.

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 most recent data indicates that insiders own a reasonable proportion of Autolus Therapeutics plc. It has a market capitalization of just US$530m, and insiders have US$130m worth of shares in their own names. I would say this shows alignment with shareholders, but it is worth noting that the company is still quite small; some insiders may have founded the business. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

With a 12% ownership, the general public have some degree of sway over AUTL. While this group can't necessarily call the shots, it can certainly have a real influence on how the company is run.

Private Equity Ownership

With an ownership of 7.0%, private equity firms are in a position to play a role in shaping corporate strategy with a focus on value creation. Some investors might be encouraged by this, since private equity are sometimes able to encourage strategies that help the market see the value in the company. Alternatively, those holders might be exiting the investment after taking it public.

Next Steps:

It's always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand Autolus Therapeutics better, we need to consider many other factors.

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.