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Can We See Significant Insider Ownership On The RealNetworks, Inc. (NASDAQ:RNWK) Share Register?

Michael Crabtree

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A look at the shareholders of RealNetworks, Inc. (NASDAQ:RNWK) 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. 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.

RealNetworks is not a large company by global standards. It has a market capitalization of US$106m, which means it wouldn’t have the attention of many institutional investors. In the chart below below, we can see that institutions own shares in the company. Let’s take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholder can tell us about RNWK.

Check out our latest analysis for RealNetworks

NASDAQGS:RNWK Ownership Summary February 7th 19

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About RealNetworks?

Institutional investors commonly compare their own returns to the returns of a commonly followed index. So they generally do consider buying larger companies that are included in the relevant benchmark index.

We can see that RealNetworks does have institutional investors; and they hold 47% of the stock. 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. It is not uncommon to see a big share price drop if two large institutional investors try to sell out of a stock at the same time. So it is worth checking the past earnings trajectory of RealNetworks, (below). Of course, keep in mind that there are other factors to consider, too.

NASDAQGS:RNWK Income Statement Export February 7th 19

Our data indicates that hedge funds own 8.0% of RealNetworks. That catches my attention because hedge funds sometimes try to influence management, or bring about changes that will create near term value for shareholders. Our information suggests that there isn’t any analyst coverage of the stock, so it is probably little known.

Insider Ownership Of RealNetworks

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.

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.

Our most recent data indicates that insiders own a reasonable proportion of RealNetworks, Inc.. It has a market capitalization of just US$106m, and insiders have US$37m worth of shares in their own names. It is great to see insiders so invested in the business. It might be worth checking if those insiders have been buying recently.

General Public Ownership

The general public, with a 10% 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.

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.

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 .

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.

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.