UK interdealer broker Icap is part of a consortium of firms mulling a bid for LCH.Clearnet, in a move that could destabilise an agreed takeover of the London clearing house by the US-based Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation.
Icap confirmed its interest in the clearing house following reports in Sunday's Observer newspaper.
In a brief statement Icap says it "an equal member of a consortium of a number of leading financial institutions that is collectively considering a possible cash offer for LCH.Clearnet."
Talks are at a preliminary stage the statement continues.
The Observer report says the consortium - which is believed to include Societe Generale and Morgan Stanley - is preparing to table of a bid of EUR12 per share for LCH.Clearnet, trumping the DTCC's EUR10 per share deal and valuing the clearer at £800 million.
Such a deal would meet Icap's long-cherished ambitions to extend its interests in the post-trade arena, whilst retaining European ownership of a systemically-important utility for EU financial markets.