Amsterdam, Brussels, Lisbon, London and Paris – 17 November 2014– EnterNext, the Euronext subsidiary designed to promote and grow the market for SMEs, announced three new measures to assist tech companies and raise their profile with investors. The announcement came at the first EnterNext Tech Conference, held today in Paris.
Growing the market’s tech sector—a strategic priority for Euronext
Market operator Euronext is well aware of the growth potential, financing requirements and sector-specific needs of technology companies and is ramping up its support for these innovative businesses, with full backing from the French government.
Euronext is continental Europe’s top marketplace for tech stock listings, with 320 technology-driven SMEs representing total market capitalisation of €41 billion. Since the beginning of 2014, 27 small and mid-sized tech companies have listed on Euronext markets, raising a total of €555 million to finance growth—an encouraging performance that reflects their growing interest in turning to the market. By contrast, the previous five years saw an average 15 listings a year of SMEs in the tech sector, raising an annual €162 million.
EnterNext Tech Conference—dedicated to financing high-growth companies
Against this backdrop, and following a series of meetings with key sector players over the past six months, EnterNext today launched its first EnterNext Tech Conference. Featured speakers included Emmanuel Macron, French Minister for the Economy, Industry and Digital Technology, and the event drew over 400 representatives of the European tech scene: entrepreneurs, business angels, private equity investors, fund managers, bankers, analysts and consultants. The first conference dedicated to the tech sector and financial markets held in Paris for many years, it addressed the strengths and weaknesses of the funding chain for innovative businesses in Europe and sought to kick-start the eco-system, injecting new energy along the way. Plans call for the event to be expanded to French regions and other Euronext countries in the future.
Three measures to boost tech sector companies
During the conference, EnterNext Chairman and CEO Eric Forest announced three measures to give tech-sector stocks fresh impetus. These will be implemented in 2015.
First, the 320 technology stocks covered by EnterNext will benefit from increased assistance, including a dedicated website, specialised conferences and extension of the Morningstar financial analysis programme to the entire segment.
In early 2015 Enternext will also introduce a new label, to be awarded annually to around 50 listed SMEs within the sector. An Expert Committee will use quantitative and qualitative criteria to select the winning companies, which will gain access to premium services—indices, road shows, a special club, and more—designed to raise their visibility with investors.
Finally, a special programme offering support and coaching to unlisted tech companies will be set up in partnership with academics, legal advisers, auditors, financial advisers and the media.
“We believe that Euronext has the resources to step up the pace of growth in this fast-moving sector,” said Anthony Attia, CEO of Euronext Paris. “These new measures are a natural outgrowth of existing initiatives to promote financing of SMEs, and they are a perfect illustration of Euronext’s core business—financing Europe’s real economy.”
“The challenge today is to educate markets, starting with investors and analysts, about the business models driving these innovative companies. The tech sector has clearly shown its vibrancy and energy, and Europe is full of entrepreneurs with projects that could benefit from market funding. EnterNext’s mission is to assist them along the way, providing the assets and capabilities they need to raise their profile and finance growth,” added Eric Forest, Chairman and CEO of EnterNext.