A diverse group of investment and market structure experts will lobby Europe on creating an easier framework for SMEs to access funding through capital markets.
Markets watchdog, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), has confirmed that next week its board will be presented with a paper by the regulator’s Securities and Markets Stakeholder Group, detailing concerns and suggestions for improving IPO pipelines and liquidity in small- and mid-caps.
A spokesperson for ESMA said there were no plans to release the paper publicly.
“The paper is not likely to be published publicly at all. It is an initiative by the stakeholders group to raise awareness with ESMA’s board,” the spokesperson said. “The group may make policy suggestions about issues that are already in train in Europe, but access to capital markets is slightly outside our remit.”
ESMA’s stakeholder group works with the European watchdog to provide stakeholder views on the development of technical standards and guidelines. The Group comprises 30 members, including European Fund and Asset Management Association director general Peter De Proft, Federation of European Securities Exchanges secretary general Judith Hardt, London Stock Exchange CEO Xavier Rolet, and Roland Bellegarde, executive vice president for European listings and cash trading at NYSE Euronext.
Access to capital markets has been an increasing issue of global debate as SME find it difficult to raise funds. While no European legislation presently exists to ease the situation, America’s Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, enshrined in April, aims at diluting certain market structure regulations to make accessing capital markets easier for SMEs.