Swiss Bourse to take over Spanish stock exchange

Ridhima Sharma
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Swiss Bourse to take over Spanish stock exchange

Swiss financial markets infrastructure operator SIX, has announced that it intends to make an all-cash voluntary tender offer for Bolsas y Mercados Españoles (BME), operator of the Spanish stock exchanges and cornerstone of the Spanish markets, to create the 3rd-largest European financial market infrastructure group.

The combination of BME and SIX, both of which are leaders in their domestic financial markets, would create a diversified group with a strong presence across Europe.

In addition, SIX believes that the proposed transaction represents an attractive financial proposition for the current shareholders of BME. SIX believes that this transaction will strengthen both Spanish and Swiss ecosystems, by creating centres of excellence and bringing new capabilities to BME and SIX participants as well as attracting new global capital pools to Spain and enhancing Swiss asset managers' presence in the EU.

The price of the Offer is €34.00 per share of BME, implying the maximum amount payable by SIX of €2,843m. The Offer Price will be fully-paid in cash.

The application for authorisation of the Offer, including the prospectus, has been filed today with the CNMV and the acceptance period and closing of the transaction are expected in H1 2020, following receipt of the relevant approvals.

SIX intends to preserve and strengthen BME's positioning in Spain by keeping, at least for a transitional period of 4 years, the current brands of BME and BME's current business activities, headquarters, office locations and its strategy in Spain. SIX is planning to keep a sufficient degree of independence for BME's business.

SIX has developed blockchain and distributed ledger technology solutions and is developing digital asset infrastructure services to enhance BME's client offering. Over a period of three years, in discussions with regulators, SIX intends to select the optimal platforms for an efficient and customer-oriented service offering.

The proposed transaction would create the potential for Swiss asset managers to enhance their presence in the European Union, leveraging BME's capabilities as the preferred platform of the combined business to carry out new potential ventures and business opportunities in this region. Furthermore, SIX's plan is for BME to be the business hub and interconnection with the Latin American markets, and to increase the appeal for BME's Latin American and MEA partnerships across all services.

SIX is advised by Credit Suisse and Alantra (joint financial advisors) as well as Linklaters (legal advisor) on the transaction.