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The Warsaw Voice » Other » May 28, 2008
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Foreign Presence
May 28, 2008   
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The Warsaw Stock Exchange is successfully competing with other bourses in the region. Today, in many respects, it is the largest market in Central and Eastern Europe and a leader among European trading floors in terms of the number of new listings. Last year the WSE came in second among regulated markets in Europe, with 81 new listings, behind the London Stock Exchange, which reported 99 debuts.

The WSE's appeal abroad is reflected by the 25 foreign companies listed on the trading floor here and the exchange's international partners who include 19 remote members and nine WSE IPO Partners.

The WSE's remote members are foreign brokers with direct access to the transaction system in Warsaw. They are increasingly active on the Polish market; the value of trading generated by remote members exceeded zl.23.5 billion in 2007, more than triple the 2006 figure. Foreign brokerages are increasingly interested in WSE membership, testifying to the growing importance of the Polish stock market in Europe and the popularity of the Warsaw trading floor among foreign investors. Last year the value of trading generated by remote members represented around 5 percent of the total value of trading on the WSE, compared with just 2 percent in 2006. Last November and December, the proportion was 7-8 percent.

In 2007, foreign brokers were increasingly active on the futures contracts and options market. While foreign members were practically absent from this market segment in 2006, last year they generated 2-3 percent of the volume of trading in these instruments on average.

In 2007, eight foreign companies became remote members of the WSE. These were Societe Generale and BNP Paribas Arbitrage of France; Cashline Securities of Hungary; Nordnet Bank and NeoNet Securities of Sweden; Cyrrus of the Czech Republic; Hansapank of Estonia; and DekaBank Girozentrale of Germany.

The WSE's 19 remote members come from countries including Hungary, the Czech Republic, Austria, Britain, France, Germany, Sweden, Slovakia, and Estonia. Remote membership gives foreign brokers direct access to the WSE system without having to use the services of local intermediaries.

The Warsaw Stock Exchange company has been actively pursuing the idea of turning Warsaw into a major trading center for equities issued by foreign companies, particularly those from other Central and Eastern European countries. These efforts have resulted in a number of foreign debuts on the WSE and have stimulated growing interest in the Polish market among foreign brokerages and companies providing other financial and investment services. In mid-November, the Warsaw Stock Exchange launched a program called WSE IPO Partner. Under the program, foreign investment companies aid the WSE in its promotional activities on regional markets. In return, the WSE supports its partners by providing them with all the necessary information and by organizing meetings and conferences.

The program benefits both the WSE and its IPO Partners. The WSE obtains active support from local players on foreign markets who promote the Warsaw Stock Exchange and select companies interested in raising funds through the WSE trading floor.

To join the program, interested companies must sign a cooperation agreement with the WSE and apply for WSE IPO Partner status. A decision to grant WSE IPO Partner status is confirmed by a certificate. A company that cooperates with the WSE under the WSE IPO Partner program is eligible for a special program logo that it can use in its daily business operations.

WSE Statistics

Number of companies

Polish companiesForeign companiesTotal
Main market31025335
Parallel market26026

WSE Statistics

Capitalization (millions of zlotys)

Polish companiesForeign companiesTotal
Main market426,841.15494,107.50920,948.65
Parallel market2,027.3002,027.30
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