Just over one year ago, the Irish Stock Exchange joined the Euronext family.
It has been an exhilarating year, filled with lots of excitement and change, and now is a great time to pause and reflect on the year gone by, and preview some of the things in our pipeline.
Equity Migration & Integration
Of the many accomplishments achieved this year, the equity migration is the one we are by far the proudest of. In just under a year, we smoothly transitioned all of our equity listings over to Euronext’s state-of-the-art trading platform, Optiq. In doing so, the Dublin issuer community gained access to a pan-European trading platform as well as increasing their profile and access to investor capital across Europe. Early data shows an uptick in trading volumes for Irish issuers, which we will publish at a later date after more time has elapsed and we can share analysis with a larger data set.
During the Optiq migration, we also increased our trading member count by almost 50 %, going from 20 to 29 overnight — adding names like Morgan Stanley, Optiver & Citadel Securities (Ireland).
In addition to this equity migration, we have also seamlessly transitioned all of our internal systems over to Euronext, bringing us closer to all of our colleagues across Europe.
To read more about the Optiq migration, see our post here.
Brexit Preparedness & Opportunity
In addition to the above technology migrations, we, like businesses across Ireland and Europe, have begun preparing for the various potential outcomes of Brexit. Like other Irish industries, we have had an entrenched dependence on the UK, in our case, for the settlement of Irish securities via the UK-based CREST system. Unlike other industries, however, we are in the fortunate position of having both a short and long-term solution in place that provides assurance to our issuers and trading members on all outcomes.
In the short-term, thanks to the collaborative efforts of Euroclear and market participants - as well as the supportive efforts of the Irish authorities and the pan-European advocacy efforts of the Euronext team -we have been granted overnight equivalence for the continued settlement of securities on the CREST system in the UK for 2 years post-Brexit.
By the end of March 2021, settlement of Irish securities will migrate from CREST to Euroclear Bank, and Euroclear is leading a work programme involving a range of market participants to refine the Euroclear Bank operating model for the Irish market. The development of this long-term settlement solution is now underway and will go ahead no matter what happens with Brexit.
Of course, Brexit also brings with it some potential opportunities for the Dublin financial ecosystem.
Specifically, Euronext Dublin has a lot to offer UK companies that want to list their securities on a European market. An example of this is the Scisys listing on Euronext Dublin on 28 November 2018 — stating that the listing was:
“a final step in our Brexit contingency planning to ensure that our business can continue our long-standing participation in both the UK and European markets. By complementing our UK listing with a European one on Euronext we will also have continued access to sterling and euro pools of capital in a post Brexit environment.”
In recent months, a number of debt issuers have also switched their debt listings from the LSE to Dublin, and we believe this trend will continue for the remainder of 2019.
2019 and Beyond
With the major projects of migration and integration now behind us, we can now shift our focus to building the future and refining and executing our vision of what Euronext Dublin can be - as well as delivering on what we can offer the local community. Our vision is a three-pronged one: innovation, advocacy & engagement.
Euronext is a technology powerhouse, so coupling the group’s technology capabilities with the traditional Irish Stock Exchange service-driven approach, means that we can now swiftly deliver client-centric innovations designed to help our clients perform at their best.
Additionally, Dublin is now Euronext’s center of excellence for listing bonds, funds and ETFs. We are thrilled about the possibility that this unlocks and the business that it will bring to Dublin. Dublin is already Europe’s largest domicile for funds and ETF’s, so with the center of excellence status and resource commitments we now have, we plan to grow that business and make Euronext a global leader in these areas of capital markets.
With the increased advocacy capabilities that Euronext offers, we can not only continue our tradition of issuer advocacy, but we can build on it. We can now offer European-wide support for our companies and trading members.
Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, we will be growing our engagement efforts with our local community and enterprises. The enterprise engagement effort will now extend beyond companies just listed on Euronext Dublin — instead, it will extend to the entire business ecosystem of Ireland. We want to champion their interests and make Ireland even more successful for entrepreneurial growth. We aim to help them to grow in a way that suits their specific needs. In May, we will launch #IPOready, our strategic financing programme for high-growth Irish companies. Now in its third year, we’re planning a bigger year than ever, as we can now integrate our programming and modules with Techshare, Euronext’s strategic financing programme for high-growth technology companies across Europe. And for companies that do decide that an IPO is the correct route for them, we now have more to offer them — Euronext is the #1 exchange for Technology and SMEs in Europe.
Engagement: Dublin Community
In terms of community engagement, we are planning to step-up our CSR efforts in the local Dublin community with quarterly initiatives to tackle issues that impact our city and its citizens. As a signal of our commitment to Dublin community, we have invested almost 13 million in our new premises on Foster place (which will adjoin our existing premises in Temple Bar where we’ve resided since 1878).
In addition to increasing our capacity to host local forums and events, our new building will proudly reflect our new identity & culture, preserving all of the heritage, history and tradition of the old Irish Stock Exchange (conserving the original trading floor and Georgian architecture) whilst adding a new dimension with a modern way of working and new technology.
In order to protect the inhabitants of our city, we have designed the building to achieve ‘Leed Gold’ status — something that is extremely difficult to do when restoring an old building! Practically, this status means we will be among the most sustainable buildings in the country and will have sustainable practices such as reusing water for planting and irrigation. We have also added space for more than 35 bikes as well as six showers to encourage our team members to commute in a sustainable way. Furthermore, everything that was taken out of the ground during construction was either reused in the building's construction, or recycled.
And, as a pillar of the Irish business community, we are particularly proud of the fact that we have used only Irish companies and suppliers in the construction, meaning everything from the stone in the foundation to the slates on the roof will go back to creating and protecting Irish jobs.
We have also deliberately chosen not to have any catering on site — meaning that long after the construction is complete, our employees will continue to support Irish jobs by going out for lunch, supporting local cafes and restaurants and boosting the local economy.
To subscribe to our newsletter, please sign up here.