Sri Lanka stock exchange lures tech start-ups

ECONOMYNEXT – The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) said it is trying to encourage technology start-ups to raise funds by listing on its ‘Empower Board’, a platform like those on other bourses targeting growth companies.

“Start-ups and tech companies are invited to connect with the CSE to discuss how they too can achieve a listing on the Empower Board to spur on the company’s growth agenda,” a statement said.

Since launching the Empower Board in 2018, the CSE, in association with the Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka (SEC), has embarked on an awareness drive in key regions around the country.

The drive aims to create awareness on equity-based, capital-raising options available to entrepreneurs and growth companies.

“The Empower Board was presented as an effective means through which Sri Lankan start-ups and progressive entrepreneurs could fund growth initiatives and achieve an overall transformation of their business,” the CSE said.

“The requirements and the process involved with a listing on the Empower Board have been tailored to capture the context of young and growing companies, and largely vary from the other listing platforms at the CSE.”

Companies listing on Empower are set to operate in an environment where they will benefit from the advisory role of a CSE approved sponsor, which will offer the company pre and post listing support, the CSE said.

The Empower Board is similar to a number of listing platforms launched by peer stock exchanges from around the world targeting growth companies, particularly entities that are in an early-mid stage of their lifecycle.

“Growing Tech Company listings are a frequent occurrence in peer foreign markets such as Malaysia, India, Poland, Malta and Sweden, which demonstrates the potential for Sri Lankan start-ups to emulate similar success in the Sri Lankan capital market,” the statement said.

The CSE in collaboration with the SEC, SLASSCOM and Hatch recently hosted an awareness session on the Empower Board, discussing specific opportunities for start-ups and entrepreneurs.





“Insights shared at the event offered participants perspective on why a new wave of tech companies globally are opting to tap into public funding through initial public offerings (IPOs) to spur their next phase of expansion, and the opportunities available to Sri Lankan tech companies and start-ups to pursue similar benefits through accessing public funds.”

(COLOMBO, February 28, 2019-SB)

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