Nasdaq has announced plans to shut down its European growth exchange Nasdaq Europe and pull out of stock futures joint venture NQLX, following a strategic review ordered by new CEO Robert Greifeld. The proposed Bulletin Board Exchange for struggling stocks, and the order routing and order management systems Liquidity Tracker and Nasdaq Tools, are also being discontinued.
Eighty full-time staff jobs will be lost as a result of the changes.
Announcing the restructuring, Greifeld says: "We will focus only on products, services and initiatives that help us achieve our goals of delivering a better solution to investors, market participants and listed companies."
This means concentrating resources on capturing an even greater share of IPOs, a larger share of trading volume, and attracting listings from other exchanges, he says.
"Among the tactics used to accomplish this will be expanding our sales presence and continually enhancing our system functionality," says Greifeld.
Euronext.liffe says it will take over Nasdaq's stake in NQLX, and that management and operations will continue unchanged.
Hugh Freedberg, chief executive of Euronext.liffe says: "We look forward to growing NQLX’s security futures franchise in the US, a market which is still in its infancy."
Nasdaq Europe will be wound down under a transition plan to be agreed with Belgian regulators, with closure expected by 5 January 2004.
A review of Nasdaq Deutschland, the German joint venture launched last year to take on Frankfurt's Deutsche Bourse, is ongoing says Greifeld. Market rumours suggest that Euronext is mulling the option of buying Nasdaq's 50% stake in the venture as a way of entering the German stock market.