The big shareholder groups in LightInTheBox Holding Co Ltd (NYSE:LITB) 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. 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.’
LightInTheBox Holding is a smaller company with a market capitalization of US$76.6m, so it may still be flying under the radar of many institutional investors. Taking a look at the our data on the ownership groups (below), it’s seems that institutional investors have not yet purchased much of the company. Let’s take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholder can tell us about LITB.
What Does The Lack Of Institutional Ownership Tell Us About LightInTheBox Holding?
We don’t tend to see institutional investors holding stock of companies that are very risky, thinly traded, or very small. Though we do sometimes see large companies without institutions on the register, it’s not particularly common.
There could be various reasons why no institutions own shares in a company. Typically, small, newly listed companies don’t attract much attention from fund managers, because it would not be possible for large fund managers to build a meaningful position in the company. On the other hand, it’s always possible that professional investors are avoiding a company because they don’t think it’s the best place for their money. LightInTheBox Holding’s earnings and revenue track record (below) may not be compelling to institutional investors — or they simply might not have looked at the business closely.
It looks like hedge funds own 5.3% of LightInTheBox Holding shares. That’s interesting, because hedge funds can be quite active and activist. Many look for medium term catalysts that will drive the share price higher. While there is some analyst coverage, the company is probably not widely covered. So it could gain more attention, down the track.
Insider Ownership Of LightInTheBox Holding
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. 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.
It seems insiders own a significant proportion of LightInTheBox Holding Co Ltd. Insiders own US$7.7m worth of shares in the US$76.6m company. 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
The general public, with a 16.0% stake in the company, will not 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 Equity Ownership
With a stake of 15.5%, private equity firms could influence the LITB board. 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.
Public Company Ownership
We can see that public companies hold 52.6%, of the LITB shares on issue. 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.
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.
Many find it useful to take an in depth look at how a company has performed in the past. You can access this detailed graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow .
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.
To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.
The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at email@example.com.