SC Malaysia eases norms for firms issuing convertible notes to VC, PE firms

Petronas Twin Tower, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Photo: Mirko Blicke/Unsplash

In a move seen to make the fundraising process easier and cost-effective for startups, the Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) on Tuesday eased regulations for businesses issuing convertible notes to registered venture capital (VC) and private equity (PE) firms.

Businesses can now lodge the issuance of their convertible notes directly with the SC without requiring the services of a principal adviser. The lodgement fees will also be waived to further lower the fundraising cost, the regulator said in a statement.

The move would particularly benefit startups, micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) as well as small and mid-cap companies, the SC said.

“The SC continues to explore measures to ensure that the capital markets remain accessible, particularly for SMEs,” said SC chairman Syed Zaid Albar, adding that the initiative was part of a series of flexible steps undertaken to meet the funding needs in the current situation.

There are currently 124 VC and PE firms registered with the SC, managing an estimated total commitment of 6 billion ringgit. The issuance of the convertible notes will be facilitated through new requirements in the Guidelines on Unlisted Capital Market Products under the Lodge and Launch Framework, the SC added.

These new provisions will outline criteria for eligible convertible notes. This includes requirements for these convertible notes to be issued to and transferable only between VC and PE firms registered with the SC. The lodgement process has also been simplified via electronic submission of the required information via email.

These measures will also be provided for Islamic convertible notes but will be operational at a later date, the regulator added. 

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.