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OTCQB Venture Marketplace Reaches 500 Verified Companies and OTCQB Composite Index Launched

Feb 26, 2015

OTC Disclosure & News Service

- OTCQB Venture Marketplace Reaches 500 Verified Companies and OTCQB Composite Index Launched

OTCQB Venture Marketplace Reaches 500 Verified Companies and OTCQB Composite Index Launched

PR Newswire

NEW YORK, Feb. 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- OTC Markets Group Inc. ("OTC Markets Group" or the "Company") (OTCQX: OTCM), operator of Open, Transparent and Connected financial marketplaces for 10,000 U.S. and global securities, today announced 500 U.S. and international companies have been approved to trade on its OTCQB® Venture Marketplace since the introduction of new OTCQB marketplace standards on May 1, 2014.  The 500 verified OTCQB companies have met new standards that are designed to improve marketplace integrity and enhance transparency for investors.  

In addition, OTC Markets Group today announced the launch of the OTCQB Composite Index (.OTCQB), a new benchmark for tracking the performance of verified OTCQB companies.  The Index, which is calculated on a total return and price return basis, has a minimum liquidity screen to ensure tradeability and will be rebalanced quarterly to account for the growing number of companies approved to trade on OTCQB.  Index data is calculated in real-time and available on OTC Markets Group's website, www.otcmarkets.com, and through major financial data distributors and websites including Bloomberg, Reuters and the FT.com.  

"Reaching 500 verified OTCQB companies in just over nine months combined with the launch of the new OTCQB Composite Index marks a major milestone in the development of OTCQB as America's venture market," said R. Cromwell Coulson, President and CEO of OTC Markets Group.  "Venture stage U.S. and international companies are beginning to recognize the value of trading on a dedicated U.S. public venture market with transparency standards and requirements tailored to their unique needs as well as resources for increasing their visibility with U.S. investors.  Likewise, with the OTCQB Composite Index investors and analysts now have a convenient yardstick for measuring the performance of these verified OTCQB venture companies over time.

"We look forward to welcoming more companies to the OTCQB Venture Marketplace in the months ahead," said Cromwell.

Highlights of First 500 Verified OTCQB Companies:      

  • $10.53 million median market capitalization
  • 379 are headquartered in the U.S.
  • 459 are SEC reporting companies
  • 51 are non-U.S. companies listed on a qualified foreign venture exchange such as the TSX Venture Exchange and Canadian Securities Exchange
  • Feature a wide variety of industries, including biotechnology, media, technology, mining, oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, food and consumer products
  • Notable companies include: Aero Grow International, Inc., Graphene 3D Lab, Inc., Jones Soda Co., Salon Media Group Inc. and The ONE Group Hospitality, Inc.

For a list of the first 500 verified OTCQB companies, visit http://www.otcmarkets.com/content/doc/OTCQB500List.pdf

About the OTCQB® Venture Marketplace 
In 2014, OTC Markets Group introduced standards and eligibility requirements for OTCQB with the goal of making it a better venture marketplace.  To be eligible, companies must be current in their reporting to a U.S. or foreign regulator, pass a minimum bid price test of one penny ($0.01) and undergo an annual verification and management certification process providing additional information about the company's insiders, advisors and share count.  Companies that are approved to trade on OTCQB receive access to additional premium services to help them build visibility and improve transparency for investors including the OTC Disclosure & News Service® and free real-time Level 2 quotes. 

Companies currently traded on OTCQB have a choice of meeting the new requirements within 120 days after their fiscal year-end date, choosing to qualify for OTCQX or being downgraded to OTC Pink where they can trade at no cost, with simplified rules while they refinance, reactivate or reinvent their businesses. Approximately 1,500 OTCQB companies face deadlines for compliance over the next five months.  The rollout will be complete when the last group of companies currently traded on OTCQB are required to comply by July 2015. 

This release is for informational purposes only.  OTC Markets Group provides no advice, recommendation or endorsement with respect to any company or securities. Nothing herein shall be deemed to constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy securities.

About OTC Markets Group Inc. 
OTC Markets Group Inc. (OTCQX: OTCM) operates Open, Transparent and Connected financial marketplaces for 10,000 U.S. and global securities.  Through our OTC Link® ATS, we directly link a diverse network of broker-dealers that provide liquidity and execution services for a wide spectrum of securities.  We organize these securities into marketplaces to better inform investors of opportunities and risks – OTCQX®, The Best Marketplace; OTCQB®, The Venture Marketplace; and OTC Pink®, The Open Marketplace.  Our data-driven platform enables investors to easily trade through the broker of their choice at the best possible price and empowers a broad range of companies to improve the quality and availability of information for their investors.  To learn more about how we create better informed and more efficient financial marketplaces, visit www.otcmarkets.com.

OTC Link ATS is operated by OTC Link LLC, member FINRA/SIPC and SEC regulated ATS.

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Media Contact:
Saskia Sidenfaden, OTC Markets Group Inc., +1 (212) 896-4428, saskia@otcmarkets.com



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SOURCE OTC Markets Group Inc.

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The above news release has been provided by the above company via the OTC Disclosure and News Service. Issuers of news releases and not OTC Markets Group Inc. are solely responsible for the accuracy of such news releases.