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With 55% institutional ownership, MicroStrategy Incorporated (NASDAQ:MSTR) is a favorite amongst the big guns

Key Insights

  • Institutions' substantial holdings in MicroStrategy implies that they have significant influence over the company's share price

  • A total of 11 investors have a majority stake in the company with 51% ownership

  • 11% of MicroStrategy is held by insiders

A look at the shareholders of MicroStrategy Incorporated (NASDAQ:MSTR) can tell us which group is most powerful. We can see that institutions own the lion's share in the company with 55% ownership. That is, the group stands to benefit the most if the stock rises (or lose the most if there is a downturn).

Since institutional have access to huge amounts of capital, their market moves tend to receive a lot of scrutiny by retail or individual investors. As a result, a sizeable amount of institutional money invested in a firm is generally viewed as a positive attribute.

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

View our latest analysis for MicroStrategy

ownership-breakdown
ownership-breakdown

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About MicroStrategy?

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.

MicroStrategy 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. 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 MicroStrategy'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

Investors should note that institutions actually own more than half the company, so they can collectively wield significant power. We note that hedge funds don't have a meaningful investment in MicroStrategy. Our data suggests that Michael Saylor, who is also the company's Top Key Executive, holds the most number of shares at 11%. When an insider holds a sizeable amount of a company's stock, investors consider it as a positive sign because it suggests that insiders are willing to have their wealth tied up in the future of the company. With 11% and 8.8% of the shares outstanding respectively, Capital Research and Management Company and The Vanguard Group, Inc. are the second and third largest shareholders.

A closer look at our ownership figures suggests that the top 11 shareholders have a combined ownership of 51% implying that no single shareholder has a majority.

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. Quite a few analysts cover the stock, so you could look into forecast growth quite easily.

Insider Ownership Of MicroStrategy

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 information suggests that insiders maintain a significant holding in MicroStrategy Incorporated. Insiders own US$3.2b worth of shares in the US$28b 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

With a 34% ownership, the general public, mostly comprising of individual investors, have some degree of sway over MicroStrategy. 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.

Next Steps:

It's always worth thinking about the different groups who own shares in a company. But to understand MicroStrategy better, we need to consider many other factors. Take risks for example - MicroStrategy has 4 warning signs (and 1 which is significant) we think 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.

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.