News: Further facilitation of access to the capital market for SMEs

04/15/2021 13:30

The Zagreb Stock Exchange has approved new rules for its Progress market.

Progress market is a multilateral trading facility managed by the Zagreb Stock Exchange, for the small and medium enterprises.

The new rules of the Progress market are in line with the changes in EU regulations related to the SME Growth Markets and to the CFSSA Guidelines from January 2021, in which the regulator proposes a number of measures to facilitate Croatian SMEs access to capital market financing.

The Progress Market is characterized by a simpler admission process and fewer reporting obligations compared to the regulated market, and the new Rules will further facilitate market access for SMEs. They have been simplified, and allow simples admission documents, as well as raising the threshold for raising capital without drafting a Prospectus from the current EUR 5 million to EUR 8 million. New Rules open the possibility of new types of financial instruments on the Progress Market, such as convertible bonds, issuers will be able to have liquidity contracts, and it will be possible to raise capital for SPVs as well.

On this occasion, Tomislav Gračan, a Member of the Management Board of the Stock Exchange, stated: Since the establishment of the Progress Market, we have been continuously working on easing the conditions for access to the capital market for small and medium enterprises in accordance with EU regulations. The EU is rapidly adopting a number of legal incentives for markets that, like Progress, are registered as "SME Growth Markets" and thus opening the door for European stock exchanges to adapt their Rules to the needs of SMEs, which is part of our development strategy as well. As a Stock Exchange, we actively participate in a number of initiatives in Croatia and the EU aimed at simplifying and adjusting admission to trading and raising capital for SMEs through trading platforms like this, and with new changes to the Progress Market Rules we have taken an additional step to contribute to a positive environment for entrepreneurs, economic growth and employment.

The new rules of the Progress market apply from April 23, 2021.