HKEX to raise its bid for London Stock Exchange

Photo: HKEX website

Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd. will raise its 29.6 billion-pound ($36.5 billion) takeover bid for the London Stock Exchange Group Plc next week after receiving conditional support from some key shareholders, The Times reported.

The initial offer valued LSE at 83.61 pounds per share and several stakeholders have told the Hong Kong exchange that it would need to be raised to between 90 and 100 pounds for it to be taken seriously, the paper reported. HKEX is also prepared to meet investors’ demands to increase the cash portion of the offer, the newspaper said.

The Hong Kong exchange will likely make the offer next week before the LSE can complete its $27 billion deal for data provider Refinitiv. The HKEX has demanded LSE walk away from the Refinitiv deal. Under U.K. takeover rules, HKEX also must submit a formal offer by Oct. 9, unless LSE grants an extension.

LSE last month rejected HKEX’s initial takeover proposal, citing complications ranging from political unrest in Hong Kong to potential problems with regulators. HKEX countered with a charm offensive, bringing in UBS Group AG and HSBC Holdings Plc to convince shareholders of the merits of its own proposal, Bloomberg News reported.