An ordinary share is an equity instrument subordinate to all other equity classes. The holder of an ordinary share participates in an entity's profits only after all other types of shares have participated. There may be more than one class of ordinary shares.
A potential ordinary share is a financial instrument or other contract that may give itsholder the right to ordinary shares, such as options, warrants, and convertible preferred stock.
Under generally accepted accounting principles, common stock is conceptually the same as an ordinary share.