June 7, 2017 / 1:50 PM / 6 months ago

Deutsche Boerse says open to index and data business deals

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Deutsche Boerse AG (DB1Gn.DE) is on the lookout for deals in the index, data, and analytics space following the collapse of its merger with the London Stock Exchange Group PLC (LSE.L), the company’s chief financial officer said on Wednesday.

The plaque of the Deutsche Boerse AG is pictured at the entrance of the Frankfurt stock exchange February 1, 2012. REUTERS/Alex Domanski/File Photo

The third attempt to create a super bourse by linking London and Frankfurt ended in March after European Union competition regulators opposed the deal, and German officials objected to the head office being based in Britain.

“One of the lessons learned is that consolidation across the exchange business, at least in Europe, is currently not supported by politicians and regulators,” Deutsche Boerse CFO Gregor Pottmeyer said at the Sandler O‘Neill Global Exchanges and Brokerage Conference at Le Parker Meridien Hotel in New York City.

He said uncertainty as a result of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union also did not help the exchange M&A landscape, so Deutsche Boerse would focus on areas where the political dependency to get a deal done is not as strong.

That means looking at index, data and analytics businesses, as well as foreign exchange and commodities, he said.

“But overall, it always needs two for a tango and therefore our focus is on our standalone strategy, but we are also open for these kinds of M&A opportunities,” he said.

The focus on data and index business acquisitions mirrors the recent actions of two of Deutsche Boerse’s biggest rivals.

    Intercontinental Exchange Inc (ICE.N) said last Thursday it reached an agreement to acquire Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s (BAC.N) global research index platform for an undisclosed amount.

    Two days earlier, LSE said it agreed to buy Citigroup’s (C.N) Yield Book fixed-income analytics service and its related indexing business for $685 million in cash, the exchange group’s first big deal since the Deutsche Boerse merger fell through.

    LSE said the Citi acquisition would boost the size and capabilities of its FTSE Russell indexes business, taking assets under management using its indexes to about $15 trillion.

    Reporting by John McCrank; Editing by Bernard Orr

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