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A look at the shareholders of Cogstate Limited (ASX:CGS) can tell us which group is most powerful. Institutions will often hold stock in bigger companies, and we expect to see insiders owning a noticeable percentage of the smaller ones. 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.
With a market capitalization of AU$402m, Cogstate is a small cap stock, so it might not be well known by many institutional investors. Taking a look at our data on the ownership groups (below), it seems that institutional investors have bought into the company. Let's delve deeper into each type of owner, to discover more about Cogstate.
What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Cogstate?
Many institutions measure their performance against an index that approximates the local market. So they usually pay more attention to companies that are included in major indices.
Cogstate already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. 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. If multiple institutions change their view on a stock at the same time, you could see the share price drop fast. It's therefore worth looking at Cogstate's earnings history below. Of course, the future is what really matters.
We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in Cogstate. David Dolby is currently the largest shareholder, with 14% of shares outstanding. In comparison, the second and third largest shareholders hold about 13% and 13% of the stock. In addition, we found that Bradley O'Connor, the CEO has 2.5% of the shares allocated to their name.
Our research also brought to light the fact that roughly 52% of the company is controlled by the top 5 shareholders suggesting that these owners wield significant influence on the business.
While it makes sense to study institutional ownership data for a company, it also makes sense to study analyst sentiments to know which way the wind is blowing. There is a little analyst coverage of the stock, but not much. So there is room for it to gain more coverage.
Insider Ownership Of Cogstate
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. 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 information suggests that insiders maintain a significant holding in Cogstate Limited. It has a market capitalization of just AU$402m, and insiders have AU$162m worth of shares in their own names. This may suggest that the founders still own a lot of shares. You can click here to see if they have been buying or selling.
General Public Ownership
The general public-- including retail investors -- own 28% stake in the company, and hence can't easily be ignored. While this size of ownership may not be enough to sway a policy decision in their favour, they can still make a collective impact on company policies.
Public Company Ownership
Public companies currently own 6.8% of Cogstate stock. 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. Be aware that Cogstate is showing 3 warning signs in our investment analysis , you should know about...
If you would prefer discover what analysts are predicting in terms of future growth, do not miss this free report on analyst forecasts.
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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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.