US regulators approve new Silicon Valley stock exchange

SAN FRANCISCO: US regulators approved a new stock exchange that is the brainchild of a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, a move that will give high-growth technology companies more options to list their shares outside of the traditional New York exchanges. The US Securities and Exchange Commission approved the creation of the Long-Term Stock Exchange, or LTSE, a Silicon Valley-based national securities exchange promoting what it says is a unique approach to governance and voting rights, while reducing short-term pressures on public companies.

The LTSE is a bid to build a stock exchange in the country’s tech capital that appeals to hot startups, particularly those that are money-losing and want the luxury of focusing on long-term innovation even while trading in the glare of the public markets. The stock exchange was proposed to the SEC in November by technology entrepreneur, author and startup adviser Eric Ries, who has been working on the idea for years. He raised $19 million from venture capitalists to get his project off the ground, but approval from US regulators was necessary to launch the exchange.

The decision followed an uncertain fate for LTSE, which had faced SEC opposition before revising parts of its proposal. Ries says the public market’s focus on short-term results leads to a decline in innovation, something LTSE wants to reverse. A 2017 study by public policy think tank Third Way showed that going public was accompanied by a 40 per cent decline in patents within five years after listing, the result of pressure to satisfy analysts’ short-term expectations. — Reuters