DUBAI (Reuters) – Nasdaq Stock Market Inc. may consider raising its bid for the London Stock Exchange if the LSE recommends an offer at a higher price or a rival bid emerges, the president of Nasdaq International said on Tuesday.
Nasdaq, which holds a 28.75 percent stake in the LSE, said on Monday it would pay 1,243 pence per share in cash for the rest of Europe’s biggest stock market.
“It’s the best final offer,” Charlotte Crosswell told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference in Dubai.
“There are two circumstances for any change. If the LSE makes a recommendation or if there is competing bid,” she said, echoing a condition outlined in Nasdaq’s announcement on Monday when it said its 1,243 pence offer was final.
The LSE rejected Nasdaq’s offer within seven hours, with Chief Executive Clara Furse saying the bid “fails to recognize the outstanding growth record and prospects of our group on a stand-alone basis.”
Crosswell declined comment on any specific price.
Monday’s Nasdaq offer sent LSE shares up 6 percent to 1,291 pence, valuing it at about 3.2 billion pounds, amid speculation that Nasdaq or another party would bid the price higher.
The LSE has long been viewed as a takeover target because it is relatively small and growing rapidly. It has rejected approaches from OMX AB, Deutsche Boerse AG, Macquarie Bank Ltd.
and Nasdaq since 2000.
The offer will officially be made to LSE shareholders this week.
Nasdaq said the deal would create the world’s largest exchange by number of listings, more than 6,400 companies with a market value of $11.8 trillion, and the most active exchange with average daily volume of 7.4 billion shares traded. This was Nasdaq’s second offer since March.