17 December 2020

On 13 November 2020, the Association of Banks in Singapore (“ABS”) announced the adoption of certain enhancements and updates to the ABS Listings Due Diligence Guidelines. These updates, which had been made in close collaboration with Singapore Exchange Regulation (“SGX RegCo”), were designed to enhance and raise the standards of due diligence conducted on companies seeking to list on the Singapore Exchange.

The updated Guidelines, which were last revised in 2016, set out and clarify expectations and recommendations on due diligence work that issue managers and full sponsors carry out during the initial public offer/reverse takeover and listing processes. Among other things, the revisions made to the Guidelines address and adapt to the continuing changes to the equity capital markets environment and economic climate, including recent increases in issuers from more nascent sectors such as technology that are seeking equity capital.

Key updates in the revised guidelines include:

  • Increased focus on the assessment of the adequacy and effectiveness of the issuer’s internal controls to meet its business needs and challenges as a listed company
  • Assessment of the sustainability and viability of the issuer’s business, taking into consideration, in particular, the challenges posed by the prevailing economic climate
  • Targeted guidelines for due diligence on issuers operating in specialised, restricted or niche industries, and/or in higher risk jurisdictions

Reference materials 

The following materials are available on the ABS website www.abs.org.sg: