BSE shareholders okay IPO plan

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Shareholders of the BSE stock exchange have approved its proposed plan to sell up to 30 per cent of its equity, in a much-awaited Initial Public Offer (IPO). It is expected to hit the market this financial year. The exchange plans to file draft papers next month with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi).

The exchange said it was a unanimous e-vote of around 9,000 shareholders at the annual general meeting last week. BSE has appointed Edelweiss Financial Services as lead merchant banker, and AZB & Partners and Nishith Desai Associates as legal advisors to the issue. The proposed IPO could be a combination of an Offer for Sale by existing equity holders and a fresh issue, for up to a maximum of 30 per cent of the post-issue share capital. The shareholders also approved the audited and consolidated financial statement for 2015-16.
The exchange initiated the IPO process from January, when Sebi notified amendments in its clearing corporation regulations, allowing exchanges to list.

The same month, BSE told Sebi it was fully compliant with the regulator terms and wished to go public through an IPO. Sebi had given an in-principle nod on March 12. At present, Multi Commodity Exchange is the only listed one.

Nearly 28 per cent of the BSE shareholding is with corporate and individual trading members. The average holding of each broker is 65,000 shares. There are 1,250 brokers, of which 1,000 are active.