Big Ben Venture


Going strong regardless the pandemic


Nasdaq Nordics had a fantastic IPO year floating 78 new companies, creating an increased international interest. Nasdaq Nordics is looking forward to work with many more international companies who are seeking to list in Stockholm.

GoingPublic interviewed in December Adam Kostyál, Senior Vice President, Head of European Listings.

Corona has kept some hot candidates from making IPOs, at least in Germany. There were a meager five listings at the end of 2020. At Nasdaq Stockholm, on the other hand, there is great satisfaction — and Adam Kostyál, Senior Vice President and Head of European Listings, is clearly raising expectations for the coming year.

GoingPublic: Mr. Kostyál, 2020 was a constant string of exceptional situations - how did that influence the activities on Nasdaq Stockholm?

Kostyál: We noticed great interest in Nasdaq Stockholm from potential issuers and we got off to a very positive start to the year. The corona pandemic then of course gave us a shock. Shortly before the end of the year, however, I can definitely say: wrongly. Nasdaq Stockholm has overcome the challenges. Demand has recovered completely. The capital market has adapted very quickly to the changed conditions — both in terms of the valuation levels of the companies and in terms of interactions. Business has just simply shifted into virtual space. So far, we've had 57 new additions to Nasdaq Stockholm, after 47 listings in 2019. So we've had a fantastic IPO year.

The balance sheet on the German stock exchanges is rather poor. What is the difference?

Our definite advantage is that Sweden has a stock trading culture — unlike most other European markets. Every household, every family, is directly or indirectly active in the market, owns shares or funds. We have a real and widely ramified ecosystem that understands and lives the stock exchange and capital market.

What does that mean specifically for the company?

In addition to the service providers and investment banks who are only interested in major IPOs, we have a network of consultants and specialists who also support small and medium-sized companies with their IPOs. This is a great added value that we bring and that sets us apart from other stock exchanges in Europe.

With a listing on Nasdaq Stockholm, smaller issuers also get the necessary visibility in the market and can collect the necessary capital for their next growth steps.

But the IPO is not enough.

Fortunately not — after all, even after the IPO, listed companies have the opportunity to raise fresh capital via the capital market at any time and to pursue their growth path — this is an advantage especially for capital-intensive and long-term oriented industries such as biotechnology.

How many international companies have already been won over by the arguments in favor of Nasdaq Stockholm?

Today around 10% of our listings come from abroad. But we see a very clear upward trend here. We speak to numerous companies — also from Germany — who are considering going public on Nasdaq Stockholm and want to know exactly whether the IPO can be an alternative with us.

In Germany in particular there are many companies that are not big enough for an IPO on their home market, but would be absolutely right with us — we currently spend a lot of time in Germany.

Who are you talking to?

A nice attempt — but of course I can't comment on it. But what I can say: The successful examples that are successful on Nasdaq Stockholm continue to stimulate activity and demand.

For which industries is a listing on Nasdaq Stockholm particularly attractive?

Growth industries such as gaming or clean-tech, which have a strong international focus, will find a perfectly fitting ecosystem here with interested investors, a strong peer group, numerous analysts and a large community of service providers. Of course, a German company from the real estate sector can also try their luck with us, but that's not what most Swedish investors focus on.

Which companies, in turn, do you focus your activities on?

We are interested in companies that want to grow worldwide and bring innovative technology and a solid business model with them.

As a subsidiary of the Nasdaq Group, which is also behind Nasdaq New York, who do you advise on dual listing?

A second listing can be an opportunity for a wide variety of companies to increase their market value. You gain access to a new group of investors and a well-developed ecosystem. A concrete example of a recently successful dual listing is Media and Games Invest (MGI), which has been listed on Nasdaq Stockholm since October in addition to its listing in Frankfurt. The company is a perfect fit for the Stockholm Stock Exchange, as it is profitable and fast-growing as well as in the attractive gaming market for Swedish investors.

Price trend:
S2 Medical
Green Landscaping
Asarina Pharma
Better Collective
Lime Technologies
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Published 28 December 2020
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