Dow Jones to sell Stoxx stake to Deutsche Börse and Six Group

Dow Jones to sell Stoxx stake to Deutsche Börse and Six Group

Dow Jones has agreed to sell its 33.3% stake in Swiss index provider Stoxx to Deutsche Börse and Six Group for EUR206.1 million in cash.

Deutsche Börse, Six Group and Dow Jones currently each own a third of the company. Dow Jones will receive EUR132.1 million for its stake and EUR74 million for intellectual property rights acquired by Stoxx. Deutsche Börse says it plans to finance the transaction out of equity.

Dow Jones could also receive a further EUR29 million depending on business performance, with the payment coming in mid-2011.

Following the deal, Deutsche Börse will control the index firm, owning 50% plus one share, and will also consolidate Stoxx results. Six Group will own 50% minus one share.

Deutsche Börse and Six Group say the deal will enable them to significantly expand their position in the international index business, complementing their established DAX and SMI families.

In addition, the pair say that direct access to the Stoxx indices will strengthen their other joint activities, especially in the derivatives space within Eurex. They also intend to set up a new entity to perform index calculations, with Six Group owning 50% plus one share.

Reto Francioni, CEO, Deutsche Börse, says: "A majority in Stoxx provides us with the opportunity to capitalize on a strong index and data business also in other areas across the Group. Therefore, we believe the transaction creates."

Urs Rüegsegger, CEO, Six Group, adds: "We are convinced that Stoxx is about to become a truly global provider and leader in the indexing industry. Together with our partner Deutsche Börse we will now be able to focus on geographical and product-driven expansion and strengthen our market position in the ETF and derivative space and diversify the revenue streams."

The deal is expected to close in Q1 2010, subject to approval by the German antitrust authority and further customary closing conditions.

Dow Jones was acquired by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp for around $5.7 billion in 2007. However, Murdoch's main target was the Dow Jones-owned Wall Street Journal and analysts have suggested the index business could be sold off.

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