NSE forms panel to expedite IPO process

29/02/2016 14:40

Facing intense investor pressure to go public, National Stock Exchange (NSE) said it has formed a committee to expedite the listing process and seeks support for “self-listing agenda”.

The listing committee, comprising NSE board members, representative shareholders and the management, will hold consultations with stakeholders and proceed on restructuring exercise simultaneously with self-listing agenda.

While BSE has said it has no problem with cross-listing and has already approached Sebi seeking approval to launch IPO and get listed, NSE is opposed to the idea of cross-listing and wants to list shares only on its own platform saying it can not be subjected to regulation by a rival.

A stock exchange typically functions as a front-line regulator for all the companies listed on its platform in terms of disclosure requirements including of key information.

“The NSE board has formed a listing committee to accelerate the listing process and assist the Managing Director and Chief Executive in this,” the nation’s largest bourse said in a statement, adding the formation of the panel was decided at the last board meeting.

The board has authorised MD and CEO Chitra Ramkrishna to induct panel members apart from shareholder representatives who are currently not represented on the board, it said.

“We are committed to take the listing of the bourse to the exchange platform. Understanding of critical issues and a constructive dialogue is important to reach this milestone in stipulated timelines,” Ramkrishna said.

The panel will take assurances from stakeholders to support its principled stand that an exchange should continue to be regulated by an regulator only and not by competitors.

The committee will also have common nominees to advice on legal, regulatory, government matters and also for getting feedback from shareholders.

The NSE is pitching hard for self-listing but capital markets regulator Sebi is firm that only cross-listing of stock could be allowed. But the exchange argues that globally many exchanges globally are self-listed.

The bourse is under intense pressure from various investors, including those from abroad, to expedite listing, while several shareholders have also approached the Sebi and other authorities in this regard.

Besides, various investors have opposed the NSE’s business restructuring plan, saying the move would delay the listing and result in loss in shareholders’ value. Under the proposed rejig, NSE plans to create a separate entity for non-regulated business.

Welcoming the move, Sohil Chand, Managing Director of Norwest Venture Partners India, which holds a stake in NSE, said the listing committee formation is directly in response to shareholders’ demand to expedite the process.

“We wanted the listing to be done in a time-bound manner. This (committee) should help in completing listing in the shortest time period possible,” he told PTI.

“The selling shareholders wanted a forum for coordination on listing,” Chand said, adding the NSE has assured investors the restructuring process would not cause any delay in the listing process.

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