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Is GP Strategies Corporation's (NYSE:GPX) Shareholder Ownership Skewed Towards Insiders?

The big shareholder groups in GP Strategies Corporation (NYSE:GPX) have power over the company. Institutions often own shares in more established companies, while it's not unusual to see insiders own a fair bit of smaller companies. 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 US$357m, GP Strategies 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. We can zoom in on the different ownership groups, to learn more about GP Strategies.

ownership-breakdownNYSE:GPX Ownership Breakdown July 25th 2021

What Does The Institutional Ownership Tell Us About GP Strategies?

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.

GP Strategies already has institutions on the share registry. Indeed, they own a respectable stake in the company. 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 GP Strategies' historic earnings and revenue below, but keep in mind there's always more to the story.

earnings-and-revenue-growthNYSE:GPX Earnings and Revenue Growth July 25th 2021

Since institutional investors own more than half the issued stock, the board will likely have to pay attention to their preferences. Hedge funds don't have many shares in GP Strategies. Sagard Capital Partners, L.P. is currently the largest shareholder, with 21% of shares outstanding. For context, the second largest shareholder holds about 8.3% of the shares outstanding, followed by an ownership of 6.7% by the third-largest shareholder. In addition, we found that Adam Stedham, the CEO has 1.3% of the shares allocated to their name.

We did some more digging and found that 6 of the top shareholders account for roughly 52% of the register, implying that along with larger shareholders, there are a few smaller shareholders, thereby balancing out each others interests somewhat.

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 GP Strategies

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.

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.

Shareholders would probably be interested to learn that insiders own shares in GP Strategies Corporation. In their own names, insiders own US$26m worth of stock in the US$357m company. This shows at least some alignment. You can click here to see if those insiders have been buying or selling.

General Public Ownership

The general public holds a 12% stake in GP Strategies. 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 Equity Ownership

Private equity firms hold a 21% stake in GP Strategies. This suggests they can be influential in key policy decisions. Some might like this, because private equity are sometimes activists who hold management accountable. But other times, private equity is selling out, having taking the company public.

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. To that end, you should be aware of the 3 warning signs we've spotted with GP Strategies .

But ultimately it is the future, not the past, that will determine how well the owners of this business will do. Therefore we think it advisable to take a look at this free report showing whether analysts are predicting a brighter 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.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. 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.

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

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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