The Inter-connected Stock Exchange of India (ISE) has postponed a decision on the sale of its brokerage subsidiary to the first week of next month. A board meeting on June 7 will decide, said P J Mathew, managing director. "The entities (interested in buying) are still conducting their due-diligence. They have requested a 20-day extension," he said.
The exchange had initially put May 15 as the final date for completing the bidding process. Around half a dozen entities are in the running for ISE Securities & Services Ltd (ISS), the broking arm with presence in 80 locations across 21 states. Other broking entities have also expressed an interest, Mathew said. The brokerage has 456 registered sub-brokers and authorised persons on the NSE and 280 on the BSE, according to company figures.
ISE had been promoted by 12 regional stock exchanges (RSEs) and has been trying to restart operations for some time. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) recently asked it to sell off the brokerage subsidiary as a precondition, said Mathew.
The board meeting is also likely to discuss issues related to the RSEs and their need to meet Sebi's minimum criteria to continue operations, he said. The stock market regulator has set a minimum net worth of Rs 100 crore for stock exchanges, as well as minimum annual turnover of Rs 1,000 crore. Many regional exchanges are said to be eyeing the merger route to meet this criteria, say sources.
They are also said to be looking at unloading their own brokerage subsidiaries to meet Sebi's criteria for continuing operations.
ISE's broking subsidiary was set up to allow brokerages on RSEs to access national ones, such as the BSE and the NSE. The regional exchange would create a broking subsidiary, of which they could become sub-brokers. This entity, in turn, would take membership of the national exchanges. ISS commenced operations in the NSE segment from May 3, 2000, and the BSE from December 24, 2004, said its website.
RUN-UP TO THE SALE
- Had set May 15 as deadline for completing sale
- Short-listed bidders seek more time for due-diligence
- June 7 new deadline
- Board meeting on June 7 to finalise sale
- Board also to discuss options before regional exchanges to meet Sebi norms