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Owning 43% in Harvey Norman Holdings Limited (ASX:HVN) means that insiders are heavily invested in the company's future

Key Insights

  • Harvey Norman Holdings' significant insider ownership suggests inherent interests in company's expansion

  • The top 2 shareholders own 52% of the company

  • 12% of Harvey Norman Holdings is held by Institutions

A look at the shareholders of Harvey Norman Holdings Limited (ASX:HVN) can tell us which group is most powerful. And the group that holds the biggest piece of the pie are individual insiders with 43% ownership. That is, the group stands to benefit the most if the stock rises (or lose the most if there is a downturn).

With such a notable stake in the company, insiders would be highly incentivised to make value accretive decisions.

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

View our latest analysis for Harvey Norman Holdings

ownership-breakdown
ASX:HVN Ownership Breakdown March 18th 2024

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About Harvey Norman Holdings?

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.

We can see that Harvey Norman Holdings does have institutional investors; and they hold a good portion of the company's 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 Harvey Norman Holdings, (below). Of course, keep in mind that there are other factors to consider, too.

earnings-and-revenue-growth
ASX:HVN Earnings and Revenue Growth March 18th 2024

Harvey Norman Holdings is not owned by hedge funds. From our data, we infer that the largest shareholder is Gerald Harvey (who also holds the title of Top Key Executive) with 36% of shares outstanding. Its usually considered a good sign when insiders own a significant number of shares in the company, and in this case, we're glad to see a company insider play the role of a key stakeholder. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 16% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 4.7% by the third-largest shareholder. Additionally, the company's CEO Kay Lesley Page directly holds 1.6% of the total shares outstanding.

A more detailed study of the shareholder registry showed us that 2 of the top shareholders have a considerable amount of ownership in the company, via their 52% stake.

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 are a reasonable number of analysts covering the stock, so it might be useful to find out their aggregate view on the future.

Insider Ownership Of Harvey Norman Holdings

While the precise definition of an insider can be subjective, almost everyone considers board members to be insiders. Management ultimately answers to the board. However, it is not uncommon for managers to be executive board members, especially if they are a founder or the CEO.

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 Harvey Norman Holdings Limited. Insiders own AU$2.6b worth of shares in the AU$6.1b company. That's quite meaningful. Most would be pleased to see the board is investing alongside them. You may wish to access this free chart showing recent trading by insiders.

General Public Ownership

The general public-- including retail investors -- own 26% 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.

Private Company Ownership

We can see that Private Companies own 18%, of the shares on issue. Private companies may be related parties. Sometimes insiders have an interest in a public company through a holding in a private company, rather than in their own capacity as an individual. While it's hard to draw any broad stroke conclusions, it is worth noting as an area for further research.

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. Be aware that Harvey Norman Holdings is showing 2 warning signs in our investment analysis , you should know about...

Ultimately the future is most important. You can access this free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

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.