The Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) has joined with securities firms to introduce the “Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and Startups Go Public Programme”. The initiative is geared towards accelerating stock market development, attracting foreign investors and boosting investment confidence.

Hong Sok Hour, the CEO of CXS, said during the launch that the initiative reflects the bourse’s efforts, in partnership with stakeholders, to propel the stock market’s growth. He noted that it paves the way for a broader engagement with foreign investors and enhances trust, especially for prospective firms keen on raising funds through equity and debt securities in the capital market.

He further noted that securing financing via the stock market expedites the journey to prosperity.

“Not only does it enhance the company’s standards and cement public trust, but it also assures business sustainability and provides a legacy for future generations,” he said.

“The capital market, akin to systems in other nations, facilitates business magnates to offload stock worth millions or billions annually. This creates a passive revenue stream for people and offers an uncomplicated access point for overseas investors keen on Cambodian opportunities without the need to establish firms or seek licences,” he added.

Ten Cheng Yueh, managing director of Cambodia Securities Plc, indicated that the initiative’s objective was to foster collaboration and financial backing for SMEs and prospective firms, both before initial public offerings (IPOs) or bond issuances, and to lure foreign stakeholders to the CSX.

Data from the Securities and Exchange Regulator of Cambodia (SERC) show that since the capital market’s inception, 20 companies have made their mark on CSX.

Of these, 11 have floated equity securities – with nine on the main board catering to large enterprises and two on the growth board aimed at SMEs. The remaining nine released corporate bonds.

Golden Tree Co Ltd issued the first of Cambodia’s green bonds, aligning with the ASEAN Green Bond Standard.

Collectively, the 20 companies raised $328 million and boasted a cumulative market capitalisation of $3.08 billion, equivalent to 10.64 per cent of Cambodia’s GDP as of August 30.

SERC has licensed and/or accredited around 130 firms in the sector, including securities enterprises, derivative business entities and those engaged in collective investment schemes.