Bulgaria's only stock exchange became a public company after the Financial Supervision Commission approved its prospectus and the bourse was listed on its own platform.
The capital of the bourse is a total of BGN 6 582 860 at BGN 1 apiece. The actual trade with shares will start after the upcoming registration of the stock exchange's public state and new status in the Trade Registry.
Bulgaria's Finance Ministry raised at the beginning of October its share to 50% plus one share from 44% in the country's stock exchange. The government bought 715,000 shares at BN 1 apiece as it prepared to sell its majority to an industry investor and offer the rest to the public.
Since 2008, the stock exchange has traded on the Deutsche Boerse's Xetra platform under a contract that expires in 2012. Bulgaria has discussed ways to sell its bourse stake over the past decade with Sweden's OMX AG and exchanges in Austria, Greece and Poland to boost interest in local stocks and make trading more transparent.
Representatives of the Finance Ministry and the Stock Exchange have commented that the move will give the ministry the opportunity to seek a strategic investor, make the Exchange transparent, increase interest towards the capital market and reinstate the trust in the latter.
Meanwhile Victor Papazov, founder, former CEO and chairman of the Bulgarian Stock Exchange has harshly criticized the decision, saying the Bulgarian government is threatening the country's economic future by effectively nationalizing its stock exchange at a knock-down price.