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Regulator gives Acleda Bank green light to list on bourse

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Acleda Bank was the first Cambodian commercial bank to be granted permission in principle to issue securities on the Cambodia Securities Exchange. Hong Menea

Regulator gives Acleda Bank green light to list on bourse

Locally-owned Acleda Bank Plc, the largest commercial bank in Cambodia, on Tuesday received official approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission of Cambodia (SECC) for its initial public offering (IPO).

This paves the way for its listing on the Kingdom’s nascent bourse in the upcoming months.

SECC director-general Sou Socheat told The Post that the bank’s presence on the bourse will attract more public attention and reel in more foreign investors due to its high performance over the last decade and its strong financial position.

“The presence of Acleda Bank will boost both local and international investors’ confidence in our stock market.”

Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) market strategist and chief operating officer Ha Jong-weon told The Post on Tuesday that the bank had met all of the SECC’s requirements.

“We are so happy that Acleda Bank received approval at the meeting.

“As per procedure, after being granting principal approval, the applicant is allowed to go on a public road show from one day after.

“Then, the book-building period will last around two weeks and subscription for another two weeks,” Ha said.

He said the bank will take around one month and a half to list on the CSX. However, the period may change depending on investor demand.

“There are currently five equity-listed companies on the bourse spanning various industries. However, they have not yet fulfilled the huge demand in the market.

“Thus, we expect to receive as many companies as possible on the bourse, representing all sectors. The presence of Acleda Bank provides a new attractive product to public investors.

“Cambodians in particular who have not had faith in, and have had limited knowledge of our market, will have a great opportunity to invest in the bank, the largest bank in Cambodia in terms of loan portfolio in 2018.

“It is another step for the capital market. Additionally, we expect several companies to go public and issue corporate bonds this year.

“We are optimistic that both the market and the Cambodian economy will see high growth,” he said, adding that the tentative listing date is April 27.

Acleda Bank was the first Cambodian commercial bank to be granted permission in principle to issue securities on the CSX. The bank was officially granted permission by the National Bank of Cambodia on November 26.

Since its humble beginnings 27 years ago as a national NGO meant to provide credit to small enterprises, the bank has increased its capital 700-fold and its net profit nearly 2,000-fold. Its assets are now valued at $6 billion.

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