S. Korea’s 3rd bourse to ease listing rules

SEOUL-- South Korea's stock market for venture firms and start-ups plans to ease its listing rules, allowing more small firms to raise funds via the market, the nation's financial regulator said Tuesday.

The Korea New Exchange (KONEX) market opened in 2013 for fledgling businesses to raise funds easier via stock sales rather than having to borrow from banks.

The Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) decided to ease listing rules for the KONEX market as the average daily transaction value for the market has been on the decline since last year.

Currently, only 20 institutional investors or an individual with a deposit above 150 million won (US$132,900) are allowed to participate in the market. The institutional investors must have a record of investing more than 30 billion won each into small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

Under the new listing standards, the number of institutional investors for the KONEX market will be raised to between 40 and 50. Also, the value of an institutional investor's investment record for SMEs will be reduced to more than 15 billion won, FSS officials said.

A total of 141 firms are listed on the KONEX market and its total market value stood at around 4 trillion won, the FSS said in a statement.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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