December 8, 2022

European stock market plans tech-only index

Euronext announced 108 firms will be part of its Euronext Tech Leaders "segment", an initiative that has drawn comparisons to the Nasdaq in New York


Euronext announced 108 firms will be part of its Euronext Tech Leaders “segment”, an initiative that has drawn comparisons to the Nasdaq in New York – Copyright AFP Jade GAO

Europe’s biggest stock exchange on Tuesday set out its plan for an index focused on tech firms to boost a sector that has long lagged behind US competitors.

Euronext announced 108 firms will be part of its Euronext Tech Leaders “segment”, an initiative that has drawn comparisons to the Nasdaq in New York, an exchange housing many top tech companies.

The European tech index, set to be launched in July, includes Finnish telecom giant Nokia, French software developer Ubisoft and the Netherlands-based food delivery firm Just Eat Takeway.com.

The 108 firms have a total market capitalisation of 258 billion euros ($276 billion) and include 41 French companies.

By comparison, Google parent Alphabet, the biggest firm on the Nasdaq, has a market capitalisation of more than $1.5 trillion.

The pan-European exchange said its ambition was “to strengthen the European tech sector and be a catalyst for the next generation of tech leaders”.

As well as listing firms on its new index, the exchange said it would offer a “suite” of other services to tech companies including help with initial public offerings.

“In Europe and particularly in France, we need a platform that is able to offer initial investors… and growing companies a capacity to raise equity capital,” Euronext boss Stephane Boujnah told a press conference.

Boujnah dismissed the comparison with the Nasdaq, telling reporters his exchange was aiming for a completely different approach.

The desire to forge a tech sector to compete with Silicon Valley has long consumed European leaders, with French President Emmanuel Macron at the forefront. 

He has invested heavily in initiatives like incubator hubs designed to foster start-ups.