Euronext hints at sweetening offer for Oslo Bors
06 February 2019
Stock markets operator Euronext said on Monday it may increase its offer for Oslo Bors VPS after Nasdaq made a higher rival bid, even as it acknowledged the decision of the board of directors of Oslo Bors VPS Holding ASA not to recommend Euronext’s offer.
US stock market operator Nasdaq on Monday confirmed that it would offer 152 Norwegian crowns ($17.98) per share for Oslo Bors, outbidding Euronext.
Euronext, which had offered in late December to pay 145 crowns per share, valuing the company at 6.24 billion crowns or $739 million, said it might submit a revised bid.
On 14 January 2019, Euronext launched an all-cash tender offer to acquire all issued and outstanding shares of Oslo Bors VPS for NOK 6.24 billion, and had already secured support for the offer from the majority of Oslo Bors VPS shareholders representing 50.5 per cent of the total number of outstanding shares through irrevocable binding pre-commitments to tender shares in the context of the offer, and share purchases. Euronext’s offer is subject to a 50.01 per cent minimum acceptance condition, which is already met.
Euronext, which is already regulated in Belgium, France, Ireland, the Netherlands, Portugal and the United Kingdom, is currently awaiting the ministry of finance's decision of its ownership application (based on advice from the Norwegian Financial Supervisory Authority (Finanstilsynet)) in order to complete the acquisition of all shares tendered in favour of its offer.
“Euronext is determined to acquire Oslo Bors VPS and remains committed to a constructive and continuous dialogue with Oslo Bors VPS shareholders, board and management as well as the wider Norwegian ecosystem,” the exchange stated in a release.
“Euronext will assess available options to adjust its offer and will communicate when appropriate,” it added.
Euronext, which has a strong track record of pan-European and decentralised independent market infrastructure management, said its combination with Oslo Bors VPS will bring benefits to all Norwegian stakeholders. Euronext’s model, capitalising on local strengths, identity and vibrant markets, fuels its ambition to finance the real economy, especially SMEs, by providing them with access to the largest liquidity pool in Europe.
Euronext also fully committed itself to the further development of Oslo Bors VPS, both its stock exchange and the Central Securities Depository (CSD, known as VPS), through a client-centric plan benefitting all parties of the Norwegian financial ecosystem, to support its bid.