KARACHI: Pakistan Stock Exchange Limited (PSX) has received an overwhelming feedback from 17 foreign as well as local investors in response to its invitation for expression of interests (EOIs) for acquiring equity stake in the PSX, said a spokesman on Tuesday.

Divestment Committee of PSX, constituted by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) towards the end of February 2016, in pursuance of provisions of Stock Exchanges (corporatisation, demutualisation and integration) Regulations, 2012, was mandated to oversee and complete the process for divestment of PSX’s 40 percent equity stake to local and or international investors.

According to a spokesman, the whole or part of the said stake was proposed to be transferred either to a ‘strategic investor’ or alternatively, a minimum of 25 percent equity stake, be sold to a financial investor, which opted to act as an ‘anchor investor’, while the remaining part of the stake, if any, would go to other selected financial institutions where, a single financial institution was allowed to acquire up to five percent of the stake.

The committee, after extensive deliberations and in consultation with the SECP, the apex regulator, released the invitation for EOIs in leading print and electronic editions of local and international newspapers, and simultaneously, posted the same on PSX’s website on May 31, 2016.

Originally, the last date for submission of EOIs was set at 30 days from the date of release of the invitation which was later extended till August 15, 2016.

In the meantime, the members of the divestment committee and management of the PSX aggressively pursued prospects in various jurisdictions and in the process, also personally visited some prospective investors and investment advisors in China, US, and UK.

As a result of the extensive campaign and persistent follow-up, by the end of the deadline on Monday, the PSX had received a total of 17 EOIs from foreign and local investors applying under the categories of ‘Strategic Investor’, ‘Anchor Investor’ and ‘Financial Institution’.

In the next step, the divestment committee would assess all the EOIs received and then forward the same with comments to the SECP for pre-qualification, said the spokesman.

The  Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, after its own assessment, would declare any or all of the parties submitting EOIs eligible to carry out due diligence of the PSX, and on its basis submit their binding offers for the acquisition of requisite stake in the PSX.

 

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