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Hong Kong Exchanges makes surprise $39 billion offer for Britain's LSE

Hong Kong Exchanges makes surprise $39 billion offer for Britain's LSE

9/11/2019 4:36:00 PM

Hong Kong Exchanges makes surprise $39 billion offer for Britain's LSE

Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing has made an unsolicited $39 billion t...

INVESTOR SOUNDS CAUTIONA top-10 shareholder in the LSE, who declined to be named in line with his company’s policy during potential mergers, sounded a cautious note about the prospects of a successful takeover of the exchange.“HKEX bought LME a few years ago to have a presence in the UK already, but clearly they are trying to diversify away from their Chinese exposure, which is why they are bidding now and not nine months ago,” he said.

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“Shareholders won’t be rushed to make a decision as we like the Refinitiv deal,” he added.FACTBOX-How the LSE and HKEX stack up:A successful Hong Kong bid for the LSE would sabotage Blackstone’s lucrative deal to sell Refinitiv. It would also scupper plans to refinance some $13.5 billion worth of leveraged loans and bonds which were issued to pay for Refinitiv with investment grade bonds issued by the LSE.

Prices of bonds issued by Refinitiv were only slightly lower in secondary trading on Wednesday, implying continued investor confidence in the company’s tie-up with LSE.The approach is the latest international attempt to acquire the LSE - Germany’s Deutsche Boerse (

DB1Gn.DE) has failed three times in recent years, hitting opposition from politicians and regulators.LSE CEO David Schwimmer has said that big takeovers in exchanges are difficult due to political concerns and in recent years the LSE has sought to diversify away from basic trading and clearing to data and analytics.

The Asian exchange, however, said it was confident its proposal faced no major regulatory hurdles due to little overlap in markets.HKEX said it has already begun discussions with certain regulators in Britain and Hong Kong. “The board of HKEX believes that the two businesses are highly complementary and as such, looks forward to working with the relevant authorities to deliver a clear path to completion,” it added.

Should the proposed takeover be successful, it is expected that key LSE management would continue to operate LSE businesses, HKEX said.The Hong Kong government threw its support behind the move.FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen outside the entrance of the London Stock Exchange in London, Britain. Aug 23, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/File Photo

“The government is glad to see HKEX’s endeavor to enhance its core strength and seek international expansion in accordance with its strategic plan,” a spokesman said.The UK Treasury declined to comment on commercial matters.Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom told Bloomberg TV the UK welcomed foreign investment but would “look very carefully at anything that had security implications for the UK”.

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HKEX said that under the terms of the deal, LSE shareholders would receive 2,045 pence in cash and 2.495 newly issued HKEX shares. It said it intended to apply for a secondary listing of its shares on the LSE once the deal has gone through.Additional reporting by Jennifer Hughes and Alun John in Hong Kong and Yoruk Bahceli and Abhinav Ramnarayan in London; Editing by Jason Neely and Pravin Char.

Read more: Reuters Top News »

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Not Hong Kong but the CPC behind it, Hong Kong is struggling This would be tragic. No Deal

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Hong Kong stock exchange makes $36.6 billion bid for London stock exchange Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited said on Wednesday it has made a proposal to the board of London Stock Exchange Group. I dont think that's a very good idea. Hong Kong is still communist China. Is this a bid to further itself into western economies? Here comes the Chinese! JoeSquawk andrewrsorkin BeckyQuick China is taking over the world

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