Nordic and Baltic market operator OMX is in advanced talks to become the sole technology provider of Project Turquoise, the equities trading platform established by seven investment banks to compete with Europe’s domestic stock exchanges, the Daily Telegraph reported on Monday.
OMX is the preferred technology vendor of the banks backing Project Turquoise and final negotiations should lead to a contract being signed shortly, the newspaper reported.
The deal would put US exchange operator Nasdaq in direct competition with the London Stock Exchange (LSE) because Nasdaq is in the process of taking over OMX for $3.7 bn.
Nasdaq is also currently the largest shareholder in the LSE, with a 30 % stake. The OMX deal could give Nasdaq a significant foothold in Europe without having to buy the LSE, which it tried and failed to do last year, the newspaper commented.
The seven investment banks behind Project Turquoise are Citi, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley and UBS.
In May, Project Turquoise announced that it will allow transactions both on-exchange as well as in "dark liquidity" pools, where firms offer to buy and sell large blocks of shares away from public sight. Speaking at an exchange forum conference in London, Phillip Hylander, co-head of European equities at Goldman Sachs, commented, "Turquoise is to be a hybrid that will incorporate a public order book and a non-public order book."