Wise debuts on London Stock Exchange with ‘largest ever tech listing’

London Stock Exchange Group sign in gold lettering on a wall
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The London Stock Exchange has dubbed Wise’s Wednesday debut as the “largest-ever tech listing”, as the capital attempts to bounce back following Brexit.

The fintech firm announced its decision to list on the London Stock Exchange in mid-June, garnering headlines as it revealed that it was planning to do so without raising any funds.

On the morning of 7 July, its shares opened at 800 pence, increasing to 880 pence by the end of the day and 913 on Thursday morning, with a market capitalisation of £8.75 billion

The London Stock Exchange congratulated the fintech on Twitter, saying that the listing was “the largest ever” for the tech sector on the capital’s Stock Exchange.

Wise CEO Kristo Käärmann, who co-founded the multi-currency payments app as TranferWise 10 years ago, described yesterday's listing as “incredibly exciting”, adding that “lots of hard work from many people has made it a reality”.

“But, it’s important to remember that we’re still very early on in our journey. Moving money into another currency is still a maze of hidden exchange rate mark-ups, high fees, delays, and small print for many people. We’re currently saving customers around £1 billion a year in these hidden fees. The £149 billion that’s still to go remains our focus,” he added.


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The listing comes four months after Deliveroo was branded the ‘worst IPO in London’s history’, losing almost £2 billion from its initial £7.6 billion market capitalisation.

Although most definitely an achievement for Wise, the listing was also a resounding success for the London Stock Exchange as it attempts to rebuild after Brexit. On 31 December 2020, the UK lost its rights to access the European Union’s single market, with London seeing a loss of around €6 billion (£5 billion) of daily trading in EU stocks to European markets.

Despite finally reclaiming the title of Europe’s largest share trading centre from Amsterdam in June, the London Stock Exchange’s average daily trading value is still 37.6% lower than in December 2020. By comparison, Amsterdam’s daily trading value had grown by 301.4% since the end of last year.

Although the London Stock Exchange could benefit from the EU recognising the UK’s financial regulatory systems as equivalent to its own, this is unlikely to happen any time soon. More progress has been made with the UK's post-Brexit data protection standards, which were formally approved by the EU last week, allowing data to continue to “flow freely” between the continent and Britain.

Sabina Weston

Having only graduated from City University in 2019, Sabina has already demonstrated her abilities as a keen writer and effective journalist. Currently a content writer for Drapers, Sabina spent a number of years writing for ITPro, specialising in networking and telecommunications, as well as charting the efforts of technology companies to improve their inclusion and diversity strategies, a topic close to her heart.

Sabina has also held a number of editorial roles at Harper's Bazaar, Cube Collective, and HighClouds.