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SMEs seek listing on T&T Stock Exchange
Currently there are a several Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) that are having talks about being listed on the T&T Stock Exchange (TTSE), Wain Iton, CEO, T&T Stock Exchange said yesterday. “As it is now, there are about five or six preliminary discussions taking place; none the boards have made decisions to get listed on the stock market. There is one gentleman here today who has shown interest so when the Finance Minister goes back to the budget in a couple of months he can say something was done,” he said.
Iton was speaking yesterday on the second day of the Caribbean Investment Forum (CIF) at the Hilton Hotel, St Ann’s. Marlene Street-Forest, General Manager, Jamaican Stock Exchange also spoke at the same session sharing the experience of the regional exchange.
She said since the creation of the junior stock exchange in 2009 in Jamaica there had been 11 listings, more employees for these companies had been hired and it had contributed to the overall economy of Jamaica. Finance Minister Winston Dookeran announced in the 2012 National Budget that in order to assist the SME sector and, at the same time, strengthen the domestic capital market, the Government proposed to encourage smaller companies to list on the local stock exchange.
Dookeran said SMEs with a minimum capital base of $5 million would be able to list on the TTSE provided they had at least 25 shareholders and hold at least 30 per cent of the share capital which did not exceed $50 million. Iton, who headed the Jamaican Stock Exchange (JSE) between 1987 and 2004, repeated that T&T should follow Jamaica’s success in this area.
He said the local stock exchange needed to grow and be strengthened and it was not only SME-sized businesses the exchange wanted listed but all companies. “We also want large companies, well established companies in the capital markets to raise capital. Our history of the stock exchange over the last 31 years has not been a glorious history,” he said.
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