Mayor of London Ken Livingstone has welcomed the end of NASDAQ’s hostile takeover of the London Stock Exchange.
The American owned NASDAQ, which had spent a year trying to acquire the LSE, conceded the battle for control shortly after 4pm today. It had offered shareholders in the London exchange £12.43-a-share however shares in the LSE closed yesterday at £12.82 and NASDAQ failed to secure the backing of the required 50.1% of LSE shareholders by today’s 1pm deadline.
NASDAQ President and CEO Robert Greifeld said the board were “disappointed at this outcome as we remain of the view that the Final Offers represented a full and fair price for LSE shareholders.”
Speaking shortly after the expiry of the deadline Mayor Livingstone said the LSE’s management had “done a superb job, not only for the LSE but for Londoners’ jobs and incomes, in seeing off NASDAQ’s bid.”
Mr Livingstone described the London Stock Exchange as “an outstanding success” which had helped “establish London as the world’s leading international business centre.”
However the Mayor said the threat of foreign ownership of the LSE showed a need to learn some important lessons claiming “it is not sufficient to simply keep repeating that the nationality of a company is irrelevant – the effects of a change in ownership on international competition must be taken into account.”
“If in the future the LSE is involved in any international realignment of exchanges this must be one that strengthens London’s competitive position and does not weaken it, as would have occurred with a NASDAQ takeover”