On 5 July 2021, the FCA published Consultation Paper 21/21: Primary Markets Effectiveness Review (CP21/21).

In CP21/21 the FCA discusses the functioning of the listing regime so that it can better understand the purpose and value to both issuers and investors of listing. This will provide input to how the FCA can improve the listing regime to make it more efficient and accessible, while keeping high standards for the UK public markets. Secondly, the FCA is consulting on targeted changes to its existing regime to remove barriers to listing and to improve the accessibility of its rulebooks.

The FCA is consulting on the following targeted measures to remove barriers to listing, ensure the listing regime continues to uphold the highest standards of market integrity and to improve the accessibility of its rulebooks:

  • Allowing dual class share structures within the premium listing segment in certain limited circumstances.
  • As part of the eligibility criteria set out in the Listing Rules, reducing the amount of shares an issuer is required to have in public hands (i.e. free float) from 25% to 10%.
  • Increasing the minimum market capitalisation threshold for both the premium and standard listing segments for shares in companies other than funds from £700,000 to £50 million.
  • Making several minor changes to the Listing Rules, Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules and the Prospectus Regulation Rules to ensure they are simplified where appropriate and reflect current business practices.

The deadline for comments on CP21/21 is 14 September 2021.

Subject to consultation feedback and FCA Board approval, the FCA will seek to make relevant rules by late 2021.