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Malta Stock Exchange eyeing iGaming listings

The Malta Stock Exchange (MSE) is hoping to attract iGaming companies to go public in Malta instead of Stockholm, London or Frankfurt and has invited the iGaming community to explore the regulatory, tax and financing aspects of listing and raising capital in Malta.

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The Malta Stock Exchange has set its sights on persuading iGaming companies to list in Malta.  ”It is time that we increase our business. We don’t want to be seen as a purely domestic stock exchange any longer, and there is no reason why iGaming companies cannot list here,” said MSE Chairman Joseph Portelli during a conference on Friday 28th April. The conference, which focused on how the Maltese capital markets can help the iGaming industry meet its financing needs, brought together professionals from the iGaming community and the finance sector. Portelli said that the MSE offers a well-regulated and cost-effective listing solution compared to many other exchanges in Europe, highlighting that the MSE even offers companies a discount of 25% on the listing fee in year one and two.

Joseph Cuschieri, Executive Chairman of the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), said that the iGaming industry and the capital markets should explore more deeply the potential synergies between them for mutual benefit. “From the perspective of the gaming sector, the timing of this discussion can hardly be more appropriate. This is because the industry is on the verge of a far-reaching repositioning exercise which will reshape the sector to incorporate activities which will be more intrinsically linked to the specific competitiveness factors which the Maltese economy can offer.” An active capital market, which provides the iGaming industry with sufficient funding, would be a key factor in retaining Malta’s competitiveness as a centre for iGaming companies, Cuschieri added.

According to Finance Minister Edward Scicluna, Malta’s iGaming industry has matured significantly in recent years. He also stressed that the stock exchange could present an alternative in sourcing funding at a time when there are only a few banks servicing the industry.

The conference was also addressed by James Scicluna of WH Partners, Michael Psaila of Mamo TCV, Bonavent Gauci of PwC, and Karl Micallef of Curmi & Partners. James Scicluna stressed how going public on the MSE could link that company closer to the jurisdiction, and thereby, becoming another element providing substance. Bonavent Gauci highlighted that before going public it is also important to assess whether an iGaming company is ready to live the life of a publicly listed company given the stricter reporting requirements. Michael Psaila pointed towards the MSE’s Prospects platform, which offers a lighter regulatory regime compared to the Exchange’s main market. Karl Micallef said that there is a strong demand for new issuers in the Maltese market, highlighting the fact that in Malta the majority of IPOs have traditionally been oversubscribed.

See the full list of iGaming listings on other exchanges here.

Photo credit: DOI - Jeremy Wonnacott

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