BSE tightens SME listing norms; raises financial threshold

Leading bourse BSE has tightened the financial eligibility norms for listing of Small and Medium Enterprises to attract "robust" companies to the stock market.

Under the new norms, which take effect from April 1, companies looking to list on the BSE SME platform would be required to have post-issue paid up capital of a minimum Rs 3 crore as against the current requirement of Rs 1 crore.

Besides, they would need to have a networth of at least Rs 3 crore (as per the latest audited financial results) to qualify for listing on the segment. So far, the firms were mandated to have a networth of Rs 1 crore.

Also, the net tangible assets of an SME should be worth at least Rs 3 crore, compared to current Rs 1 crore.

The new criteria would be applicable with effect from April 1, 2015, the BSE said.

"The eligibility criteria have been revised by the Exchange as a routine process to make the platform more vibrant and entrepreneur friendly so that wealth can be created for all stakeholders in the long run and give visibility to the companies," a BSE spokesperson told PTI.

"We believe, with this new framework, we will be able to attract more robust SMEs to BSE SME platform," he added.

According to the BSE, the move would also help the exchange "strengthen and enhance the screening of companies seeking listing on the SME segment".

The exchange stipulates certain financial and non- financial eligibility criteria for listing on SME platform in addition to the Sebi guidelines.

Presently, 82 companies are listed on the BSE SME platform. The market capitalisation of these companies stands at Rs 8,872.45 crore.

A total of 229 SMEs came out with initial public offers during the period April-December of 2014-15 fiscal.

In comparison, 247 such companies had hit the markets in the same period year-ago.

Top bourses -- BSE and the National Stock Exchange (NSE) -- had launched dedicated platforms for SMEs in March 2012 to enable the listing of these firms and help them raise equity capital for growth and expansion in a cost effective manner.

NSE platform for SMEs - NSE Emerge - has six companies listed on its platform.

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