Nasdaq (NDAQ) and Borse Dubai are both bidding for the Nordic exchange owner OMX. And, the price is up to about $4 billion. At the same time NDAQ is trying to sell its 31% of The London Stock Exchange. It made a run at buying the UK operation, but it went no where. NDAQ is currently shopping its shares for $1.6 billion.
NDAQ has had very little success diversifying overseas, unlike its US rival NYSE Euronext (NYX).
So, Nasdaq may adopt an "if you can’t beat ’em, join em" approach to OMX. According to The Daily Telegraph Dubai and Nasdaq are looking at a joint bid to own the Nordic operation together.
Pretty clever. NDAQ sells its London interest, it may be able to flip that into a new ownership of OMX without having to find much additional capital. And, a three-way alliance including the Middle East, Europe, and the US could be a very good business.
NSAQ can’t afford to lose this bid and linking up with the rival bidder would hedge that problem.
Douglas A. McIntyre