Meera Agro Inputs, a seed producer, is set to raise Tk 5 crore from the stock market within the next three months, becoming the first company to get listed on the Dhaka Stock Exchange’s newly launched small cap board.
The small-cap board, called the DSE SME, was rolled out on April 30 with a view to facilitating small- and medium-sized enterprises to raise funds, which were shut out from the process before that for their lower turnover.
“I want to keep my company away from bank interest rates, but I need funds to expand too. So, I decided to come to the stock market,” said Syed Abdullah-Al Mamun, managing director of Meera Agro.
The company -- which has been involved in variety development, genetic improvements, production, processing, marketing and breeding of field crop and vegetable seeds since 2009 -- has no bank loans, he said.
Meera Agro would now issue 50 lakh ordinary shares to raise funds for land development, modernisation and expansion of existing projects, and meeting working capital demand.
A processing plant will be set up with the funds to preserve the seeds and process them on a larger scale, according to Mamun.
Meera sells seeds of rice, maize, cauliflower, cabbage, carrot, bitter gourd, tomato, watermelon, cucumber, chilli, kohlrabi and radish.
Presently, the company is selling its products in Rangpur, Bagura, Meherpur, Dhaka, Sylhet, Chuadhanga, Munshiganj, Chattogram and Cumilla.
The company’s earnings per share was Tk 3.15, 2.21, 2 and 1.28 respectively in the last four fiscal years.
The overall seed market is worth more than Tk 1,000 crore now, according to the company’s prospectus.
The market of quality seeds, supplied by public and private sectors, stands at 3.5 lakh tonnes now, though the amount was around one lakh tonne a decade ago.
Apart from Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation, more than 100 firms, including some non-governmental organisations, now sell seeds.
The AAA Finance & Investment is working as its issue manager.