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Acleda raises $17.5M in IPO, becomes first bank listing

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Acleda Bank Plc becomes the sixth stock-listed firm and the first commercial bank to issue on the bourse. Photo supplied

Acleda raises $17.5M in IPO, becomes first bank listing

The Kingdom’s largest locally-owned bank, Acleda Bank Plc, raised $17.5 million in its initial public offering (IPO) on the nascent Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) on Monday.

The bank becomes the sixth stock-listed firm and the first commercial bank to issue on the bourse with a total of 4.34 million shares for sale – one per cent of its total shares of more than 433 million, according to the bank’s CSX filling.

Price per share started at 16,200 riel ($4.05) and closed at 16,500 riel.

At the listing ceremony, Acleda president and group managing director In Channy said 2,497 investors became new shareholders of the bank through the IPO.

“The official listing of Acleda’s stock opens a new chapter for the bank after more than 27 years of operation. We appreciate the relevant regulators and investors who are investing in our stock and encouraging others to follow suit despite the ongoing pandemic,” he said.

CSX CEO Hong Sok Hour said Acleda becomes the first commercial bank to issue stock on the market. By listing, the bank can raise more funds at any time via the issuance of more shares on the bourse.

“The stock market has shifted people’s financial management from saving to investment. As a result, those who have an excess of funds can opt to invest in the stock market.

“Although the current situation [the pandemic] is very uncertain, the CSX is operating as normal,” he said.

Minister of Economy and Finance and Securities and Exchange Commission of Cambodia chairman Aun Pornmoniroth presided over the ceremony.

He said the bank’s market capitalisation of about $1.75 billion, which is nearly three times the market cap of the CSX, will make the IPO more attractive for foreign investors, especially institutional investors, and will promote trade on the exchange.

“The CSX is becoming a new channel of financing for companies and enterprises in need of funds and it will also support their growth,” he said.

Han Kyung-tae, managing director of Yuanta Securities (Cambodia) Plc, the IPO’s lead manager, said Cambodians will have a chance to own Acleda shares.

“The Cambodian banking industry and Acleda Bank are healthy and profitable,” he said. “There has been no investment opportunity available for public investors until now, but Acleda has just opened the door to public investors to invest in the industry.”

CSX’s Sok Hour said that, as of May 25, there are 12 listed firms in the Kingdom – six stock-listed and six corporate bond-listed. The 12 companies have raised a combined $240 million and the stock index increased more than 57 per cent last year over 2018.

He added that to date, more than 25,000 individuals and companies have opened trading accounts at CSX.

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