Corporate raider pushing London deal?

Marketplace Staff Jan 10, 2007


MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: The London Stock Exchange has been saying no to takeover attempts by NASDAQ, but corporate raider Samuel Heyman has recently increased his stake in the LSE. That gives him the leverage to force a meeting between the two companies.

James Quinn is a Business Reporter for the Daily Telegraph in London. I asked him what the chances are that Heyman would push both groups to meet.

JAMES QUINN: I think there’s every chance. He’s done it before in past situations, in the past case of Arcelor and Mittal and the big steel merger that took place last year. I think there’s every chance he might do it here in London.

THOMAS: Is Heyman an ace in the hole for NASDAQ? Is there any reason to believe he’s sympathetic to its attempts to take over LSE?

QUINN: Difficult to know which way he’s thinking. He’s bought at prices above the NASDAQ offer but equally he’s bought at prices well below the NASDAQ offer. His usual sort of modus operandi is to try and get in these situations, he’ll sort of then try and get boards to talk to would-be investors and he’s obviously hoping if he can do then NASDAQ might raise its price.

THOMAS: Do you think Heyman would favor the merger if NASDAQ puts more money on the table?

QUINN: I certainly do, yeah.

THOMAS: Thanks a lot.

QUINN: Thanks Mark.

THOMAS: Quinn says Heyman has had brief conversations with both the LSE and NASDAQ.

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