The leading international derivatives exchange Eurex has entered into agreements to increase its stake in the Leipzig based European Energy Exchange AG (EEX) by up to 20.85 percent to then 44.07 percent for a consideration of €55.15 million.
This move underscores the strategic partnership of Eurex and EEX in emissions trading, under which the partners jointly offer contracts on emission rights since December 2007. In addition, Eurex also expands its exposure in the fast growing commodities markets.
Eurex announced on Wednesday that it plans to acquire 3.46 percent of EEX's own shares for €9.15 million, translating into €6.60 per share. In addition, Eurex has entered into a purchase agreement with Nord Pool ASA to acquire the 17.39
percent stake Nord Pool holds in EEX for a consideration of €46 million or €6.60 per share. Under the pre-emption rights laid out in the consortium agreement, Nord Pool is obligated to offer the shares on a pro rata basis also to other EEX shareholders. Against this background Eurex will acquire at least 38 percent of Nord Pool's stake. Both transactions are expected to be closed in the second quarter 2008 and are subject to approvals from Supervisory Boards of Eurex and Deutsche Börse AG, as well as the Executive Board and Supervisory
Board of Swiss Financial Market Services AG and the German Federal Cartel Office. Additionally, the acquisition of the Nord Pool stake requires the approval of the EEX Supervisory Board.
Eurex currently holds 23.22 percent of EEX's share capital, following a merger of Eurex subsidiary EEX with LPX back in early 2002. In December 2007, Eurex and EEX entered into a co-operation in emissions trading. As of 5 December 2007, Eurex participants have direct access to the EEX order book for trading EU allowance futures. Since the launch of the co-operation, volumes have strongly increased: in January 2008, the daily average volume was roughly 186,000 EUA, compared with about 11,000 EUA in January 2007. On 26 February 2008, a new daily record was achieved with 600,000 EUA.
The cooperation has the potential to create the largest international network for emissions trading, in which the two partners address approximately 600 trading member firms from the energy sector and financial institutions. As of 26 March 2008, the partners will make futures on CERs (Certified Emission Reductions) available to their mutual customer base. CERs are global emission credits in accordance with the Kyoto Protocol.