November, 9, 2020
The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) has launched an action plan to address key areas relating to the process of listing a company on the CSE with the objective of enhancing its efficiency thereby better serving the funding requirements of companies belonging to both state and private sectors. The action plan will further simplify the process, eliminate any redundant approval steps, reduce documentation and improve the time to market for companies’ new and follow-on offerings of equity and debt.
Measures have already been taken to change listing criteria by offering a wider choice of listing options for companies, further amend the listing rules to enable a simplified process in addition to carrying out changes to internal infrastructure of the CSE to ensure a smoother process workflow.
Commenting on the new plan to streamline the listing process, CSE Chairman Dumith Fernando said “Increasing the number of companies listed on the exchange is one of the CSE’s key strategic objectives. We have to make exponential progress on this front. As businesses approach the post-COVID period, it is likely that funding will be a top priority and we have versatile options available to address the different funding requirements of corporates. We have put in place systems and processes to cater to an ever-evolving business landscape in Sri Lanka and we stand ready to meet the requirements of our corporate stakeholders. We strongly believe that the steps we are taking to simplify the listing process would attract more companies to raise capital through the CSE helping them unlock value and create wealth for their shareholder.”The CSE has already commenced stakeholder engagement to obtain feedback to carry out further improvements to the CSE’s overall Listing process.
Improvements expected from this new CSE plan include the reduction of documentation that have to be submitted with the Listing Application and the removal of certain disclosures in the Prospectus/Introductory Document. In this connection, the CSE would commence discussions with the Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka (SEC) to streamline the current dual approval process.
Another significant change by the CSE is the introduction of a ‘Single Window’ customer relationship unit that will be set up within the CSE to identify potential listing candidate companies, work with such companies and assist them through the listing process. This will make it easier for companies and their advisors to understand and address any problems faced in the process through a single point of contact.
With the objective of further enhancing the transparency of the listing process, an online tracking tool for all listing applications that have been submitted to the CSE will also be introduced, which would provide Issuers with more transparency in tracking the status of their respective applications and understanding which parties hold primary responsibility at each step of the process.
The CSE now offers equity or debt based fundraising options for companies of all sizes, from large conglomerates to SMEs, through versatile listing platforms such as the Main, Diri Savi and Empower Boards.