A look at the shareholders of ASTI Holdings Limited (SGX:575) can tell us which group is most powerful. Generally speaking, as a company grows, institutions will increase their ownership. Conversely, insiders often decrease their ownership over time. I generally like to see some degree of insider ownership, even if only a little. As Nassim Nicholas Taleb said, 'Don’t tell me what you think, tell me what you have in your portfolio.
ASTI Holdings is not a large company by global standards. It has a market capitalization of S$18m, 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 institutions don't own shares in the company. Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholder can tell us about 575.
What Does The Lack Of Institutional Ownership Tell Us About ASTI Holdings?
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 are many reasons why a company might not have any institutions on the share registry. It may be hard for institutions to buy large amounts of shares, if liquidity (the amount of shares traded each day) is low. If the company has not needed to raise capital, institutions might lack the opportunity to build a position. It is also possible that fund managers don't own the stock because they aren't convinced it will perform well. ASTI Holdings might not have the sort of past performance institutions are looking for, or perhaps they simply have not studied the business closely.
We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in ASTI Holdings. As far I can tell there isn't analyst coverage of the company, so it is probably flying under the radar.
Insider Ownership Of ASTI Holdings
While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. 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.
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 ASTI Holdings Limited. Insiders have a S$8.9m stake in this S$18m business. 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, mostly retail investors, hold a substantial 51% stake in 575, suggesting it is a fairly popular stock. This level of ownership gives retail investors the power to sway key policy decisions such as board composition, executive compensation, and the dividend payout ratio.
While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important.
I always like to check for a history of revenue growth. You can too, by accessing this free chart of historic revenue and earnings in this detailed graph.
If you would prefer check out another company -- one with potentially superior financials -- then do not miss this free list of interesting companies, backed by strong financial data.
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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