Nasdaq is teaming up with IntercontinentalExchange to make an $11.3 billion counteroffer for the parent of the New York Stock Exchange.
The joint bid is a challenge to Deutsche Boerse, the owner of the Frankfurt stock exchange, which has said it will buy NYSE Euronext for about $10 billion. Nasdaq and derivatives market IntercontinentalExchange Inc. said Friday that their offer is a 19 percent premium to Deutsche Boerse's bid.
Shares of the NYSE Euronext jumped $4.55, or 13 percent, to $39.72 in afternoon trading Friday. Nasdaq OMX Group Inc.'s stock rose $2.06, or 8 percent, to $27.90, while shares of ICE dropped $4.89, or 4 percent, to $118.65.
In a statement NYSE said it will "carefully review the proposal."
Deutsche Boerse said in a separate statement that it continues "to strongly believe that the envisaged merger of Deutsche Boerse and NYSE Euronext is the best possible combination for both shareholder groups and the stakeholders of the companies."
The competition over the NYSE Euronext comes at a time when other stock exchanges are combining. In February the London Stock Exchange and the parent company of the Toronto Stock Exchange announced a $2.9 billion merger.
Nasdaq-ICE's joint bid of $42.50 in cash and stock for the NYSE was not a complete surprise, as reports surfaced last month that Nasdaq OMX, parent of the Nasdaq Stock Market, was moving closer to making a competing offer.
The proposed transaction would give NYSE Euronext stockholders $14.24 in cash and 0.4069 shares of Nasdaq OMX stock and 0.1436 shares of ICE stock for each NYSE Euronext share that they own.
The NYSE and Euronext, which owns exchanges in several European capitals, merged in 2007. The New York exchange's importance in the stock market is largely viewed as symbolic these days, as most trading now takes place on computers that can match thousands of orders a second.
As part of the Nasdaq-ICE proposal, Atlanta-based ICE would acquire NYSE Euronext's derivatives businesses. Nasdaq would keep NYSE Euronext's remaining businesses, including the NYSE Euronext stock exchanges in New York, Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam and Lisbon, as well as the U.S. options business.
Nasdaq OMX CEO Robert Greifeld said in a statement that the Nasdaq-ICE offer, if completed, "would increase transparency and liquidity in U.S. markets and create jobs as new companies raise capital."
Nasdaq and ICE say they will continue to run as separate businesses while their proposed offer is on the table and would continue to function separately if a deal is completed.
Nasdaq and ICE added that they feel their transaction would secure European Union competition clearance, while they expect the Deutsche Boerse bid would face a "deep and extended probe."
The Nasdaq-ICE offer needs the approval of a majority of Nasdaq OMX and ICE shareholders as well as approval of a majority of NYSE Euronext stockholders.
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