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M&A Financial Institutions: Stock Exchanges / Trading Sites | White & Case LLP




Financial Institution M&A Industry Trends: Stock Exchanges / Trading Platforms – H1 2021 and Outlook for H2 2021

The IMF’s global behemoths are taking over fund platforms, trading platforms and data analysis providers, under the increasingly watchful eye of European competition authorities.




  • The global giants of MFIs are developing horizontally:
    • Through acquisitions (for example, the acquisition by Euronext of Borsa Italiana and the acquisition by Tinkoff of a minority stake in the Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange)
    • Through joint ventures (e.g. CME Group’s post-trade services joint venture with IHS Markit)
  • Search for alternative income opportunities through vertical integration
  • European leaders face off against tech specialists in data analytics (e.g. Infront’s acquisition of Oslo Market Solutions)


  • The IMF’s global giants are focusing the firepower of vertical integration on:
    • Fund platforms (for example, the acquisition by Deutsche Börse of 48.8% of Clearstream Fund Center and the acquisition by Euroclear of the MFEX group)
    • Trading venues (for example, the acquisition by the Johannesburg Stock Exchange of Link Market Services South Africa)
    • Data analysis (for example, acquisition by the Luxembourg Stock Exchange of 22.8% of Tetrao and acquisition of Refinitiv by the London Stock Exchange)
  • Different prerogatives of investors:
    • Loading of liquidity (e.g. acquisition by VTB of 5.77% of the Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange and acquisition of 1.31% of Euronext by Intesa Sanpaolo)
    • Unloading of non-core liquid assets (for example, the sale by NPS RTS Association of 5% of the St. Petersburg Stock Exchange)


  • Increased surveillance of IMF vertical agreements by UK and EU competition authorities:
    • Sale by IHS Markit of the oil price information services and of the Coal, Metals and Mining businesses to facilitate the merger of S&P Global and IHS Markit
    • Sale of Borsa Italiana by the London Stock Exchange to facilitate the acquisition of Refinitiv
  • London Stock Exchange and Euronext clash to attract European SPAC listings


Stock Exchanges / Trading Places — Publicly reported cases and situations Horizontal expansion to remain opportunistic and under close surveillance by European competition authorities. Rise in vertical diversification agreements as global IMF players demonstrate strength in mergers and acquisitions to remain competitive.

Stock Exchanges / Trading Sites – Publicly Reported Transactions and Situations

Inorganic growth

The LSE has had its best start since 2006. There have been 11 IPOs, raising £ 3.24 billion between the start of 2021 and February 24, 2021. Financial News (March 2021)

Amsterdam has overtaken London as Europe’s largest equity trading center since Brexit, with an average of 9.2 billion shares per day traded on Euronext. Financial Times (February 2021)

London’s financial sector began to feel the full effects of Brexit on the first trading day of 2021, as nearly € 6 billion of EU stocks moved from the City to facilities in capital cities European. Financial Times (January 2021)


  • Johannesburg Stock Exchange (trading platform): Acquisition of Link Market Services South Africa (June 2021)
  • Deutsche Börse (Crypto trading and custody of digital assets): Majority stake in Crypto Finance (June 2021)
  • Tinkoff Group (Stock Exchange): Minority stake in the Saint Petersburg stock exchange (June 2021)
  • Moscow Stock Exchange (financial market): Acquisition of 70% of INGURU (May 2021)
  • Deutsche Börse (Fund platform): Acquisition of 48.8% of Clearstream Fund Center (May 2021)
  • Nxchange (DLT trading platform): Acquisition of Bondex (May 2021)
  • Euronext (Stock Exchange): Acquisition of Borsa Italiana (April 2021)
  • Bourse Direct (Asset management): Acquisition of Arobas Finance (March 2021)
  • Euroclear (fund platform): Acquisition of the MFEX Group (March 2021)
  • German stock exchange
    (Notice of proxy):

    Acquisition of 81% of Institutional Shareholder Services (February 2021)
  • Luxembourg Stock Exchange (Data analysis):
    Acquisition of 22.8% of Tetrao (January 2021)
  • London Stock Exchange
    (Data analysis):

    Acquisition of Refinitiv (January 2021)


  • CME Group (Trading operations): Aftermarket JV with IHS Markit (January 2021)

Realignment of the impression

  • Euronext (Asset management solutions): Disposal of Centevo (March 2021)

Loading / unloading of “liquid” stakes


  • VTB: Acquisition of 5.77% of the Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange (June 2021)
  • Intesa Sanpaolo: Acquisition of 1.31% of Euronext (April 2021)


  • RTS NPS Association: Sale of 5% of the Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange (April 2021)

Search for alternative income

  • Infront (Data solutions): Acquisition of Oslo Market Solutions (June 2021)
  • Johannesburg Stock Exchange (trading platform): Participation in a US $ 9 million Series A + funding round for Globacap (February 2021)

Click here to download “Financial Services Mergers and Acquisitions Rise to Dizzying Heights as COVID-19 Travel Bans and Bans End” PDF

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