Based on our latest shareholder structure analysis at the end of the 2015 financial year, we were able to match around 93% (2014: 85%) of the approximately 305.3 M shares outstanding with their owners. As of December 31, 2015, the number of Fresenius Medical Care shares held by our largest shareholder, Fresenius SE & Co. KGaA remained unchanged at around 94.4 M. This corresponds to a 30.9% interest in our share capital. In the same analysis, we identified a further twelve institutional investors with an interest in our share capital of more than 1%.
According to the analysis, 535 institutional investors (2014: 548) own Fresenius Medical Care shares, with the top 20 investors alone holding approximately 44 % of identified shares in the free float (2014: 43%). Eight of the top 20 investors are based in Great Britain, while six are in the U. S., three in Germany, two in France and one in Norway.
In terms of distribution of regionally allocated shares held by institutional investors: 31% of all shares identified in the free float were held in North America. Another 55.3% of the shares were held in Europe excluding Germany, with Great Britain and Ireland accounting for the majority (32.8% of free float). 11.8% of the shares were held in Germany.
Our shareholder structure is well balanced in terms of regional breakdown as well as the share of private and institutional investors.