Shareholder Register – Definition

Cite this article as:"Shareholder Register – Definition," in The Business Professor, updated September 14, 2019, last accessed October 20, 2020,


Shareholder Register Definition

A shareholder register is a record of the company’s shareholders who currently own shares in the company. In other words, it is a record containing a list of active company owners. The company creates the first register at the same time as its founding time. According to the law, the company has to keep updating the list regularly.

A Little More on What is a Shareholder Register 

The shareholder register allows the corporation, the shareholders, and the public to know the company’s ownership structure. The register contains vital information about the company’s shareholders.

What does a Shareholder Register Contain?

In a shareholder register you find the following information:

  • The number, and price of each share presented in a sequence format
  • The name, corporate identity number, personal identity number, postal address, and any other identification that the shareholder has
  • The shareholder’s occupation and income/salary
  • If the company has many shares in different classes, then the register should record the shareholder’s share class
  • Certificates of the shares
  • Information about any reservations for the shares that a shareholder makes
  • Dates of any transfers of shares, and the receiving parties
  • Restrictions for sharing or transferring shares, and
  • Dates of issuing shares to the shareholders

Special considerations for a shareholder register

The current and projected structure of the company’s capital is the additional components that the register should include. The excel document provides financing details of the company’s present operations and objectives for its growth in the future. The company can source its funds from the issuance of equity (preferred or common stock), and debt collections. The debt can be either short-term or long-term.

The Maintenance of a Shareholder Register

The board of directors in the company has the main responsibility of maintaining shareholder registers. Meaning, the board of directors should not assign any of their duties about the register to any other officer in the company.

Sometimes the board can assign the preparation of the register to the managing director of the company. However, in such cases, the board is fully responsible and should ensure that they administer the register properly.

In other cases, the marking in the register may not be clear. The board will hold a meeting to make decisions on the register notation. The board of directors should also ensure that they pay the transfer funds and present payment evidence to the company. Failure to pay the taxes is punishable by law as a violation and often results in loss of property.

According to the law, register maintenance should be in a consistent manner. The board can decide to use manual ways of recording information or automatic ways. A shareholder must share any changes to his/her information so that the company can make necessary updates. When using manual records, the board should ensure any updates are printed out.

A shareholder can use his/her rights after inclusion in the register, or after he/she announces that he is part of the company owners. He/ she should provide proof to support the statements. Some rights that the shareholders’ exercise does not require share ownership registration. The rights include payments of dividends alongside the share certificate. People owning shares together can only use shareholder rights through a joint representative.


In the Swedish Companies Act, the shareholder register is a document that can be accessed by the public. Therefore, it needs to be available at all times in the company for inspection. Every shareholder has the right to inspect it and get a copy if they want to. New publications of the document come in four times a year

References for “Share Purchase Rights”

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