SGX expecting first Spac listing in weeks, hopeful of more IPOs

The SGX is stepping up efforts to draw more listings after just three IPOs were held in the first half of this year compared with 11 last year, noted Deloitte.
The SGX is stepping up efforts to draw more listings after just three IPOs were held in the first half of this year compared with 11 last year, noted Deloitte.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The first application for a special purpose acquisition company (Spac) to list here is expected in a matter of weeks, said Singapore Exchange (SGX) chief executive Loh Boon Chye on Friday (Sept 17).

Mr Loh told CNBC that the exchange is in talks with several Spac sponsors and is seeing "a robust pipeline" of potential listings. He said some of those applications could crystallise into actual initial public offerings (IPOs) if the markets continue to do well.

The SGX is stepping up efforts to draw more listings after just three IPOs were held in the first half of this year compared with 11 last year, noted Deloitte.

The exchange also announced several new initiatives on Friday, including the setting up of an initial $1.5 billion fund to assist high-growth companies in raising capital through public listings here.

Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim Yong said at the launch of these initiative that with more home-grown companies such as gaming chair maker Secretlab and delivery services provider Ninja Van doing well on the global stage, "we must ensure that they have continued access to a range of financing options to support their expansion plans".

Singapore's efforts to attract more high-growth IPOs also come at a time when several local companies have sought listings in overseas markets.

Singapore company Grab, for example, is closing a Spac deal in the United States, while online classifieds platform Carousell, which was recently valued at more than US$1 billion (S$1.35 billion), is also exploring a US Spac listing.

Singapore online car marketplace Carro, also valued in excess of US$1 billion, is also exploring an IPO in the US, The Straits Times understands.

Mr Loh told CNBC that the SGX is "hopeful" that some of these new economy companies will choose to list in Singapore.