Pan-European exchange operator Euronext has said it is looking at options to adjust its acquisition offer for Oslo Bors after Nasdaq swooped in with a higher bid for the Norwegian stock exchange.
In a statement, Euronext said it acknowledges the decision by the board of directors at Oslo Bors not to recommend its offer despite having a majority support from shareholders, but it is considering increasing its offer for the exchange.
Euronext was outbid by Nasdaq last week, having offered NOK 152 in cash per share for Oslo Bors, valuing deal at around $770 million. Nasdaq’s bid represents a 5% premium on Euronext’s offer of NOK 145 per share or around €625 million.
“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… Euronext will assess available options to adjust its offer and will communicate when appropriate,” the statement read.
When confirming its own bid for Oslo Bors, Nasdaq said the two majority shareholders in the company, representing around 35.1% of the total shares in Oslo Bors, had already agreed to accept Nasdaq’s offer. At the same time, Euronext said it had pre-commitments from 50.6% of shareholders in Oslo Bors when announcing its intentions to acquire the business.
Euronext added in its update that its initial offer is subject to a minimum 50.1% of shareholders support, which has already been met, and it is now awaiting approval from the Norwegian Ministry of Finance on the acquisition, based on advice from the country’s regulator.
“Euronext is strongly convinced of the benefits that its combination with Oslo Bors VPS would bring 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,” the exchange concluded.