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BioNTech SE's (NASDAQ:BNTX) largest shareholders are private equity firms with 44% ownership, insiders own 20%

Key Insights

  • The considerable ownership by private equity firms in BioNTech indicates that they collectively have a greater say in management and business strategy

  • 62% of the business is held by the top 2 shareholders

  • Insider ownership in BioNTech is 20%

To get a sense of who is truly in control of BioNTech SE (NASDAQ:BNTX), it is important to understand the ownership structure of the business. The group holding the most number of shares in the company, around 44% to be precise, is private equity firms. In other words, the group stands to gain the most (or lose the most) from their investment into the company.

Meanwhile, individual insiders make up 20% of the company’s shareholders. Large companies usually have institutions as shareholders, and we usually see insiders owning shares in smaller companies.

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Let's take a closer look to see what the different types of shareholders can tell us about BioNTech.

Check out our latest analysis for BioNTech

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About BioNTech?

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.

As you can see, institutional investors have a fair amount of stake in BioNTech. This suggests some credibility amongst professional investors. But we can't rely on that fact alone since institutions make bad investments sometimes, just like everyone does. When multiple institutions own a stock, there's always a risk that they are in a 'crowded trade'. When such a trade goes wrong, multiple parties may compete to sell stock fast. This risk is higher in a company without a history of growth. You can see BioNTech's historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
earnings-and-revenue-growth

Hedge funds don't have many shares in BioNTech. Our data shows that AT Impf GmbH is the largest shareholder with 44% of shares outstanding. In comparison, the second and third largest shareholders hold about 18% and 3.7% of the stock. Ugur Sahin, who is the second-largest shareholder, also happens to hold the title of Chief Executive Officer.

After doing some more digging, we found that the top 2 shareholders collectively control more than half of the company's shares, implying that they have considerable power to influence the company's decisions.

While studying institutional ownership for a company can add value to your research, it is also a good practice to research analyst recommendations to get a deeper understand of a stock's expected performance. There are plenty of analysts covering the stock, so it might be worth seeing what they are forecasting, too.

Insider Ownership Of BioNTech

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.

I generally consider insider ownership to be a good thing. However, on some occasions it makes it more difficult for other shareholders to hold the board accountable for decisions.

Our most recent data indicates that insiders own a reasonable proportion of BioNTech SE. It is very interesting to see that insiders have a meaningful US$4.4b stake in this US$22b business. Most would say this shows a good degree of alignment with shareholders, especially in a company of this size. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public-- including retail investors -- own 18% stake in the company, and hence can't easily be ignored. This size of ownership, while considerable, may not be enough to change company policy if the decision is not in sync with other large shareholders.

Private Equity Ownership

With a stake of 44%, private equity firms could influence the BioNTech 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.

Next Steps:

While it is well worth considering the different groups that own a company, there are other factors that are even more important. Take risks for example - BioNTech has 1 warning sign we think you should be aware of.

If you are like me, you may want to think about whether this company will grow or shrink. Luckily, you can check this free report showing analyst forecasts for its future.

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.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.