IntercontinentalExchange Inc., the 12-year-old energy and commodity futures bourse, agreed to acquire NYSE Euronext for cash and stock worth $8.2 billion, moving to take control of the world’s biggest equities market.
ICE, based in Atlanta, will pay $33.12 a share for the owner of the New York Stock Exchange, 38 percent above yesterday’s closing price, according to a statement today. Both boards approved the proposal and the companies expect to complete the transaction in the second half of 2013. Last year, the U.S. Justice Department blocked a joint hostile bid by ICE and Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. for the New York-based company on concern the combination would dominate U.S. stock listings.
Sprecher joined Nasdaq OMX CEO Robert Greifeld in an unsolicited bid for NYSE Euronext in April 2011. The offer, scuttled by the Justice Department seven weeks later, sought to derail NYSE’s pending merger agreement with Deutsche Boerse AG.
“The combined company could enhance the products offered across asset classes, cross-market to different client bases with different needs, expand ICE’s reach in Europe to NYSE’s exchanges and drastically reduce the cost of futures regulation,” Joseph Greco, a managing director at Meridian Equity Partners, a New York-based broker that has traders on the NYSE floor, said in an interview. “For NYSE it would augment the futures and derivatives footprint domestically.”