Following Friday’s news that takeover talks between UK stock exchange PLUS Markets and multilateral trading facility (MTF) Project Turquoise had broken down, theTRADEnews can reveal it is now unlikely that Turquoise will choose Nordic exchange operator OMX as its trading technology partner.
Turquoise has not yet announced its technology partner, but it was widely rumoured that the fledgling MTF would choose OMX. PLUS, which walked away from takeover talks with Turquoise on Friday, is in the process of implementing a £6.7 million trading and market surveillance platform from OMX, which will be operational in early November.
A Turquoise spokesman declined to name the third party with which discussions broke down, but says, "Turquoise has been running more than a single-track strategy in choosing a technology partner and we have decided to go for other options."
Takeover talks between Turquoise and PLUS collapsed over a disagreement about how to develop the technology for the combined entity. PLUS announced on 5 October that it had entered a non-binding heads-of-terms agreement for a reverse takeover with an unnamed third party.
The Turquoise spokesman feels PLUS' initial announcement was premature. "It is regrettable that PLUS felt they had to issue an announcement two weeks ago," he says. "That message was ahead of events."
A merger with PLUS Markets would have given Turquoise a ready-made technology platform in OMX and an experienced chief executive in Simon Brickles, PLUS' CEO. Now talks have ceased, it is still not clear who will run Turquoise or what trading technology will power the MTF.
However, the Turquoise spokesman says all will soon be revealed. "We expect to make a series of announcements about technology and other important developments, which might include management, in the very near future," he says.