NEW YORK (CNNfn) - The Nasdaq Stock Market will begin to explore an alliance with the London Stock Exchange, a published report said Tuesday.|
According to the Financial Times Web site, Nasdaq International Chairman John Hilley said "A window of opportunity has just reopened" after a hostile $1.36 billion bid by Sweden's OM Gruppen failed last week, and is ready to begin a "a quick, orderly and friendly process."
A Nasdaq spokesman could not confirm Hilley's comments, but said European "consolidation is most possible with the London Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq."
Sweden's OM Gruppen failed in its bid to take over the London Stock Exchange Friday, when just 6.7 percent of LSE shareholders voted to accept the hostile $1.36 billion offer.
But the LSE shareholders' decision was "by no means a vote of cofidence" in the leadership of the LSE, according to Mark Powell, chairman of APCIMS, the trade body for U.K. retail stock brokers. He said the LSE had bought itself some time through the collapse of OM's offer.
OM Chief Executive Per Larsson said the LSE "had now simply deferred addressing the problems it faces."
Nasdaq was to have been a key partner, and eventual merger candidate, with the London and Frankfurt stock exchanges in their aborted plans to form a European "superbourse," called iX. The LSE scrapped its planned merger with Deutsche Boerse after OM Gruppen AB launched its hostile bid.
The advent of electronic marketplaces has put pressure on traditional stock markets to join forces to give investors a more-efficient platform for stock trading. The Euronext exchange was formed by the recent merger of the Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam exchanges.