LONDON (AFP) – State-linked investment funds in Qatar and Singapore are interested in buying almost one third of the London Stock Exchange from the US Nasdaq market, British media reported on Monday.
An LSE spokeswoman said it was not company policy to comment on press speculation.
Qatari fund Delta Two and Temasek of Singapore were understood to be interested in buying Nasdaq’s 31-percent stake in the London exchange, the Financial Times said without citing its sources.
The Guardian newspaper added that the Australian Stock Exchange, Deutsche Boerse and a group of Italian investment funds could also be interested. The paper did not name its sources.
The FT said that Qatar, like its Middle Eastern neighbour Dubai, was seeking to promote itself as an international financial centre positioned between Tokyo and London.
Over the weekend, meanwhile, the Sunday Times reported that Qatar had made an informal bid of almost 1.0 billion pounds (1.48 billion euros, 2.02 billion dollars) for Nasdaq’s LSE holding.
The US-based Nasdaq, which is the LSE’s biggest shareholder, said it wanted to sell up last month after a failed hostile takeover attempt.
LSE shares had surged by 5.0 percent last week amid growing speculation the group could face a fresh takeover bid. In Monday morning deals, LSE stock rose 0.51 percent to 1,372.90 pence.