Our CEO comments on the review aiming to help strengthen the UK’s position as a leading financial centre.
On dual class structures Richard Wilson, CEO, interactive investor, says: “Some of the proposals which we feared would represent an attack on good governance don’t look quite as stark in detail, with a number of safeguards proposed. The government has a careful balancing act – to maintain London’s competitive attractions, without losing our standards. The Big Bang, all those years ago, created a meritocracy and empowered smaller shareholders like never before. Today’s proposals set out some watermarks that we hope will maintain the rights of small shareholders, but they need to be carefully thought through.”
On Capital raising and private investors, Richard Wilson continues: “We strongly welcome the suggestion that the government consider improving capital raising models to make it easier to involve retail investors. We wrote to the Treasury about this in February.
“We reiterate our calls for a consultation on how IPOs can consider the rights of retail investors. Primary markets, like secondary markets, also need to embrace retail access so we would also like government to consider how this can be done in a straightforward way for private investors.”
On Pre-emption rights, Richard Wilson says: “Following a year in which retail shareholders were treated like second-class citizens through the disapplication of pre-emption rights, they are now faced with layers of bureaucracy before they are able to invest in UK plc. The process is a bit of a bull in china shop, it needs to be much simpler and the technology exists to ensure retail shareholders can access capital markets quickly without dealing with needless intervention.”
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