The Polish Ministry of Treasury is to resume plans to float the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE) following the collapse of takeover talks with German exchange group Deutsche Börse.
Talks broke down after Deutsche Börse did not submit a revised offer for the WSE by the deadline of midnight on 27 November.
Deutsche Börse was the only one of the four exchanges approached by the Ministry of Treasury that submitted a firm offer for WSE by the 16 November deadline. The other three exchanges approached were NYSE Euronext, Nasdaq OMX and the London Stock Exchange.
However, the ministry had certain questions about the offer, and had asked Deutsche Börse to submit a revised bid by 27 November to address them, according to Ministry spokesman Maciej Wewiór.
While declining to discuss the nature of the questions, Wewiór stressed that disagreements over price did not scupper the deal. “The price is important, but not the only or most important aspect,” he told theTRADEnews.com. “For us the most important aspect was providing for WSE’s future.”
“Deutsche Börse Group participated in the privatisation process of the Warsaw Stock Exchange and submitted a bid based on a fair market value and a clear assignment of competency,” said a statement from Deustche Börse on its decision not to resubmit its offer. “Deutsche Börse declined to amend its bid.”
However, the exchange added, “Deutsche Börse is open to talks in future again, dealing with the further development of the WSE and the financial centre of Warsaw.”
The decision to pursue an IPO, which would see the WSE listed on itself, rather than foreign ownership is a reversion to the original WSE privatisation plan put forward in 2008. This plan was shelved after the onset of the global financial crisis.
The new IPO plans are at an early stage, and the Ministry of Treasury has not yet decided which investors to approach or how large a stake the Polish government would retain, said Wewiór.