With market and sector indices, constituent companies come and go. We knew when we formulated the Finextra50 Index that we would no doubt soon be making adjustments due to the amount of M&A going on in the industry.
So who is going to be the first company to leave the index?
The Reuters-Thomson deal was on the radar when we created the index, but it turns out that the combined entity will retain the Reuters name for the financial and media business, and the dual listed entity will be known as Thomson-Reuters. So when the deal
eventually completes, Reuters will remain a key constituent of the index in some form.
eFunds, on the other hand, looks like it may end up being acquired by one of two other Finextra50 constituents – Fidelity or Fiserv – or potentially some as yet unnamed suitor reported to be interested in the US payments vendor.
eFunds shares have risen rapidly since it reported in its last earnings announcements that it was looking to be acquired. But
Citigroup recently downgraded it from a hold to a sell, citing an unattractive risk/reward profile with little or no upside at current prices and, significant downside if a deal doesn’t occur.
Another company that could leave our index is i-Flex, which is now approximately 81% owned by Oracle through Mauritius-based Oracle Global. Oracle’s intentions were clear last December when it increased its offer from Rs 1,475 to Rs 2,100 per share to bring
its stake up the current levels. But analysts expect that it will need to tender between Rs 2,500 and Rs3,000 for the remaining shares, and it still has India’s restrictive de-listing rules to overcome if it wants to bring the core banking vendor into its
newly formed financial services business unit.
Of course, another new deal could be announced and closed before any of these come to fruition. And we will also recalibrate the index towards the end of the year, when annual reports may reveal that some companies no longer meet the index requirements,
such as percentage of revenue derived from sales to financial services organisations.
Watch this space.