Bids were submitted by Six, Deutsche Brse and Euronext for the assets of the Italian Stock Exchange, now held by the London Stock Exchange. According to rumors, Six’s Swiss offer is the highest and valued Borsa Italiana between 3.5 and 4 billion euros. In 2007, the London Stock Exchange paid 1.6 billion for the same activities.
Size matters. Especially in a global market, such as that of finance. Monday, September 14, the deadline for the submission of bids for the totality of Borsa Italiana, hitherto owned by the London Stock Exchange (Lse), has expired, called by the Antitrust to sell after the agreement for the acquisition of Refinitiv, the branch of ‘company that dealt with finance e risk business within Thomson Reuters. A 27 billion euro transaction. London separates from Milan for two reasons. In the first place, forced to do so. There is no economic reason: Piazza Affari, led by the CEO Raffaele Jerusalmi, produces profits that have been very useful on the Thames in recent years.
The business of data
Then, there is another question, much deeper. Refinitiv allows Lse to take a very strong position in the field of data management. that the business of the future for this type of company, there are margins, development prospects. The trading of securities, in comparison, makes nothing. the major world stock exchanges operate on this level, from Hong Kong to New York to Chicago. Frankfurt is also moving along this line: Deutsche Brse extremely competitive in the sector of Clearing on derivatives, in Settlement. Then yes, there is also the price list, but the revenues of this sector are more marginal every day. For these reasons, not without some hesitation, London is convinced to sell Borsa Italiana: the tastiest dish of its menu and is tempting on the market.
Three possible buyers. Euronext, governed by Paris, the Swiss Six (the Zurich and Madrid stock exchanges) and Deutsche Brse. The interests of the Italian government seem to focus on Euronext, which is pushing the Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) into the operation, which Intesa Sanpaolo is about to join in a project that should respectively commit investments of 960 million and 240 million euros. In exchange, CDP and Intesa would obtain two shares of 8 per cent and 2.22 per cent which would equalize, once the operation is over, the packages currently held in Euronext by the French Caisse des Dpt et consignations and by Bnp Paribas. A significant commitment, with a modest counterpart. In fact, Euronext remains the smallest among the candidate buyers: it capitalizes a quarter of Deutsche Brse (one fifth of the seller Lse) and its turnover in 2019, 679 million, was significantly lower than that of the Swiss of Six, an unlisted company , but capable of amply exceeding one billion euros in turnover and spending 2.8 billion euros cash, last June, to have control of the Madrid Stock Exchange, while guaranteeing great autonomy and representation for the Spanish market. Today Euronext capitalizes on approximately 7.15 billion euros. Borsa Italiana estimated at 3.3 to 3.8 billion euros, alone about half of the entire Euronext which, under its umbrella, unites the Paris stock exchanges with those of Dublin, Oslo, Lisbon, Amsterdam and Brussels: not the very first lists of the Old Continent. Even adding the two values of Paris and Milan, London and Frankfurt would remain very distant.
With Borsa Italiana, the very precious MTS market of government bonds is at stake, a true excellence, which is based on a technology whose intellectual property is Sia. A technology that could be used as hyphen for the technological and industrial development of the platform. Especially Euronext, once part of the New York Stock Exchange which was forced to sell it also in that case for Antitrust reasons, today appears very focused on the business share sales and the waved synergies of revenues and costs would be possible only after major investments by the shareholders. In London, no doubt, the sterling counterpart will only be of interest. And this can be a guarantee. But the systemic repercussions for Italy are obvious. At a time when there is a need to think about financial markets in an innovative way, getting confused behind slogans and flags risks making Italy lose yet another train of innovation.