Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal on Monday urged small businesses to consider “dual listing” to widen their capital raising options. The minister said small companies have the option to list on the main bourses’ SME platforms and also on the Gift City in Gandhinagar.
Speaking at an event to mark the 400th listing on the BSE’s SME platform, he said there is a need to tap into more sources of capital as that can give a fillip to the small business sector.
“Possibly you can look at the International Financial Services Centre at the Gift City. We also need to see whether we can encourage some of these companies to explore getting listed through the Gift City platform or a dual listing between Mumbai and the Gift City,” he said, adding the same option can also be explored by companies looking at overseas listing.
Dual listing will help tap into domestic capital and also the international funds which have set shop or are in the process of doing so at the Gift City, he said.
It would be good to ensure that international funds also get to know about the SME platform, he said and asked the BSE to try and get foreign institutional investors and sovereign wealth funds participate in this exchange.
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“The SME platform has huge potential, and we need to market it well. We also need to get more domestic investors in and also sensitise international investors,” Goyal added.
He also noted that as many as 150 small companies which were first listed on the SME platform have graduated to trade on the main platform now.
Goyal said the government has taken many measures to ensure an orderly revival of SMEs after being hit hard during the pandemic, with schemes like ECLGS and TReDS.
“By and large, we have been able to overcome the pandemic and reasonably handle the current geopolitical situation, particularly the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, which has not deterred the confidence and the spirit of our industries,” he said.
On startups, he said the country is home to more than 100 unicorns and 70-80 “soonicorns”, which are startups closer to becoming unicorns, and added that the BSE should set up an interface with the startup ecosystem.
Such a step will be good for both as it will help them grow faster and also encourage flowing of domestic capital into the startup ecosystem. He also rued that domestic investors are not looking at the startup ecosystem in a big way. Meanwhile, Goyal condoled the passing away of Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav earlier in the day.
“Netaji (as Yadav was popularly known), was dear to all. We are very saddened by his death. His work will be remembered for many years to come,” he said.