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Who Really Owns BOS Better Online Solutions Ltd (NASDAQ:BOSC)?

Sadie Atkinson

The big shareholder groups in BOS Better Online Solutions Ltd (NASDAQ:BOSC) 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.’

B.O.S Better Online Solutions is a smaller company with a market capitalization of US$8.8m, 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 institutions don’t own many shares in the company. Let’s take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholder can tell us about BOSC.

View our latest analysis for B.O.S Better Online Solutions

NasdaqCM:BOSC Ownership Summary September 11th 18

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About B.O.S Better Online Solutions?

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.

Less than 5% of B.O.S Better Online Solutions is held by institutional investors. This suggests that some funds have the company in their sights, but many have not yet bought shares in it. If the company is growing earnings, that may indicate that it is just beginning to catch the attention of these deep-pocketed investors. When multiple institutional investors want to buy shares, we often see a rising share price. The past revenue trajectory (shown below) can be an indication of future growth, but there are no guarantees.

NasdaqCM:BOSC Income Statement Export September 11th 18

It would appear that 5.5% of B.O.S Better Online Solutions shares are controlled by hedge funds. That catches my attention because hedge funds sometimes try to influence management, or bring about changes that will create near term value for shareholders. As far I can tell there isn’t analyst coverage of the company, so it is probably flying under the radar.

Insider Ownership Of B.O.S Better Online Solutions

The definition of an insider can differ slightly between different countries, but members of the board of directors always count. 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.

We can see that insiders own shares in BOS Better Online Solutions Ltd. As individuals, the insiders collectively own US$639.1k worth of the US$8.8m company. Some would say this shows alignment of interests between shareholders and the board, though I generally prefer to see bigger insider holdings. But it might be worth checking if those insiders have been selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public — mostly retail investors — own 75.0% of B.O.S Better Online Solutions . This size of ownership gives retail investors collective power. They can and probably do influence decisions on executive compensation, dividend policies and proposed business acquisitions.

Private Company Ownership

We can see that Private Companies own 10.5%, of the shares on issue. 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:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important.

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.

Of course this may not be the best stock to buy. So take a peek at this free free list of interesting companies.

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 editorial-team@simplywallst.com.