Q: With 47 listings against LSE’s 39 the Nasdaq Nordic exchanges have outperformed all European markets in the first half of 2016. What have been the drivers for this success?
This is what I would call a silent revolution in the European listing space. And the pillars of this slow building trend are actually threefold: Nasdaq technology and infrastructure, attractiveness of Nordic economic space and strong, recurring liquidity in the Nasdaq Nordic markets.
Q: How is liquidity different in the Nordics?
In the Nordics, we are blessed with a strong, loyal retail involvement in equities. This means that we have recurring and true liquidity in even micro and small cap companies. So even the big institutional players of the region see a business case in operating in these segments. Consequently, besides having around 60 pct. of investors coming from outside the Nordics, we have a strong backbone of retail and institutional investors supporting all segments – from First North companies to the global players in the large cap segment.
Q: Diving into the granularity, where does the bulk come from and where is the cash raised?
Nasdaq in the Nordics actually consists of different markets each contributing with their specific flavour. Common denominator is strong retail involvement, big pension fund investors, strong corporate governance and well-functioning economies. But it is fair to say that Nasdaq Stockholm is by far the cornerstone in attracting companies. So, approximately 8 out of ten companies are listed in Sweden. But, while Sweden and Finland are strong on listing large numbers of especially small cap companies, Nasdaq is also leading the European space on listing large cap companies that raise billion dollar figures and contribute and attract a lot of liquidity into the Nordics. The June listing of DONG Energy, the largest listing in Europe so far, showcased the depth and breadth of the Nordic listing capabilities which can accomodate both small, micro cap companies and blue chip corporations raising two digit billion USD figures.
Q: large part of the listings come into the Nasdaq First North market. How important has it been to beat LSE’s AIM growth market?
AIM was the model on which we built the First North market. So it is a tremendous milestone. However, one of the drivers of First North’s success and a main differentiator to AIM is that First North is a stepping stone for SMEs. We see entrepreneurs come into the market, grow their business, learn how to communicate to the market and be a listed company and later on move onto the main market of the Nordic exchanges. This is a dynamic which is attracting many SMEs and growth companies also from outside the Nordics. The Marketing Group from Singapore and the UK is a recent example.
Q: Going forward, will we see Brexit influence this trend?
Brexit will certainly offer us more advantages than challenges. Listingwise we are already leading the European space and with the stability, transparency and affluence of the Nordic economies, the Nasdaq Nordic markets will constitute an alternative that will be hard to ignore for UK as well as European growth companies alike. So if you are company aiming for a market that will also be within the EU tomorrow, Nasdaq has an obviuous alternative for you in Europe.
Learn more about Nasdaq's Nordic exchanges here >
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