Companies and Advisors Reluctant to Declare AIM Market the Best for SMEs

Advertisment

Moore Stephens: “Survey Respondents Reluctant to Declare AIM the Best”

  • Only one-third of company respondents think AIM is the most successful growth market for SMEs
  • Advisors split on AIM as world’s most successful growth market for SMEs with 47% agreeing and 44% disagreeing
  • 53% of those polled indicate optimism about AIM’s performance in the next year
  • Moore Stephens survey addresses whether AIM is still considered the world’s leading growth market?

LONDON, 30th April 2018 – Moore Stephens, the top ten accounting and advisory firm, has carried out an in-depth survey amongst directors of AIM companies and their professional advisors to explore one overarching question – is AIM still considered the world’s leading growth market?

AIM has clearly been a highly successful market in the past but there is a split between company respondents and their advisors. The study found that companies were unsure of AIM as the most successful growth market for SMEs as 47% said they didn’t know and only a third think it was, and 19% think it isn’t. In contrast, their advisors were split, with 47% considering it was the most successful growth market for SMEs, as opposed to 44% who didn’t.

Despite this, AIM issuers have achieved significantly larger market capitalisations – up from an average of £70 million in 2013, to £111 million in 2017 – an increase of 59%. Asked to score its performance over the last 12 months on a scale of one to five (where five is the most positive) 60% of respondents scored it either a four or a five.

Marty Lau, Head of Capital Markets at Moore Stephens commented: “This split between AIM companies and advisors is worth taking note because this split seems to suggest that many IPO advisors and prospective new AIM issuers are finding AIM to be no longer as attractive as it once was.  The possible outcome to this is that some good quality companies are steered to list on other markets.”

When looking at the current market, Moore Stephens discovered that nearly half (44%) of those polled had a positive impression of the current market and also about the ease of performing a secondary placing. And where there is clear current satisfaction, there is also confidence for the future. More than half (53%) of those polled indicated optimism about AIM’s performance in the next year. Indeed, an overwhelming majority, at 86% of respondents, think their company is well positioned to increase revenue over the next 12 months.

“This reluctance to declare AIM as the most successful growth market for SMEs is intriguing,” continued Lau. “Despite the overall satisfaction and confidence in the market, advisors seem to be split on their optimism for SMEs seeking for listing on the AIM Market. The increasing trend in terms of the size of new issuers suggests that the AIM Market now tends to prefer larger and more developed companies.”