PrimaryMarkets looks to retail space

01-Nov-2016

By Sarah Kendell

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After facilitating over $500 million in transactions between high net worth investors over the past seven months, secondary trading platform PrimaryMarkets is looking to partner with a retail financial services licensee to bring its services to the broader market.

Speaking to financialobserver, PrimaryMarkets chief executive Nick Capp said the platform was aiming to have a selection of its more straightforward asset listings available in an online exchange format by the end of the first quarter of 2017, enabling users to quickly and easily transact units in unlisted assets, such as pre-initial public offering companies or managed funds.

“We are on a wholesale AFSL (australian financial services licence) at the moment so we will need to align with a market provider to get to that stage, but we see a lot of opportunities in unlisted funds or unlisted options in ASX listed companies to become a lot more automated,” Capp said.

PrimaryMarkets currently offers users the opportunity to transact on a diverse range of assets from unlisted shares to water and resources licences, with sophisticated investors and intermediaries such as advisers and brokers currently making up an even split of buyers and sellers.

“Because we’re only seven months old, when I was speaking to intermediaries back in March or April they were a bit hesitant, but now that they have seen us build some momentum and that we are still here, they are starting to want to build some listings and understand the different deals available,” Capp said.

Technology was a key industry PrimaryMarkets users were keen to get exposure to, with the platform having facilitated the sale of $10 million worth of shares in payments provider Tyro by several ex-employees looking to cash out a component of their holdings in the business, he said.

“The technology space is the easiest one because there are a lot of companies that are growing really quickly, but still don’t want to be under the gaze of the ASX – Tyro’s market cap is around $400 million and if they were on the ASX they would probably be booming, but they like the idea of staying private for as long as they can,” he said.

The platform was also in talks to list similar holdings in early stage United States tech companies, which could provide eager Australian investors with more exposure to the sector while giving US employees the opportunity to sell shares in a market where secondary trading was less developed, he noted.

PrimaryMarkets recently announced the appointment of former Patersons Securities head of mergers and acquisitions advisory Jamie Green as managing director of its new advisory division, which would support sellers and buyers of more complex assets through the transaction process.

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