ICE considers counter bid for London Stock Exchange Group

  • Business
  • Tuesday, 01 Mar 2016

A worker shelters from the rain as he passes the London Stock Exchange in the City of London, Britain, in this October 1, 2008 file photo. The Deutsche Boerse in Frankfurt and the London Stock Exchange are taking a fresh run at a merger that would create a European trading powerhouse, in a bid to take on ICE, the U.S. exchange making in-roads into Europe. REUTERS/Toby Melville/Files

FRANKFURT: Exchange and clearing house operator Intercontinental Exchange Inc said on Tuesday it was considering making an offer for London Stock Exchange Group Plc (LSEG), a week after Deutsche Boerse AG made a third attempt for a merger with LSEG.

No approach has been made to the board of LSEG, and no decision has been made yet as to whether to pursue such an offer, ICE said in a statement.

Shares in LSEG, which had a market capitalisation of US$13bil as on Monday, rose as much as 8.8% to a record high of 2,914 pence on Tuesday morning.

A spokesman for LSEG declined to comment.

ICE is planning a counter bid for LSEG in an attempt to scuttle a merger with Deutsche Boerse, Bloomberg reported earlier on Monday citing sources.

The potential deal between LSEG and Deutsche Boerse would combine the LSE’s share-trading operation with the derivatives trading of Deutsche Boerse’s Eurex. It would propel the companies to a similar scale as US exchange ICE, which has taken a huge slice of the European derivatives market.

Atlanta-based ICE must make an offer for LSEG no later than March 29. Under British takeover rules, Deutsche Boerse must either make an offer or announce it will not do so by March 22, unless it obtains an extension from the UK mergers regulator.

Deutsche Boerse could not immediately be reached for comment. The German company’s shares were up 1.7% at 77.57 euros. - Reuters

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