It was announced here today that the "Qatar Holding", the investment arm of Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) has signed an agreement with Nyse Euronext whereby it purchased Nyse Euronext's 12-percent stake in Qatar Exchange and has become the sole owner of Qatar Exchange.
Cooperation between Qatar Exchange and NYSE Euronext will continue in different fields including technology and expertise.
Mr. Rashid Bin Ali Al Mansoori, CEO of Qatar Exchange stated that the agreement signed by the two parties provided for the sale of NYSE Euronext's 12% stake in Qatar Exchange to "Qatar Holding" after achieving all the strategic goals that were identified for the company following the signing of the strategic partnership agreement between them in June 2009.
"Over a period of more than four years of strategic partnership with NYSE Euronext, Qatar Exchange has achieved significant progress and made remarkable achievements in terms of developing infrastructure and systems and the diversification of investment tools and services provided to investors", he highlighted.
He added that among the most important achievements was the MSCI upgrade of the Qatari market from frontier to emerging market status and stated that Qatar Exchange had reached another major mile-stone in its drive to develop a world-class financial centre in Doha with the introduction in 2010 of the Universal Trading Platform based on NYSE Euronext's existing best-of-breed systems and incorporating state-of-the-art technology. This launch marked an important step in the history of the Qatari market with the introduction of new order types, order parameters and a closing auction thus improving efficiency and transparency, and attracting a diverse investor base.
He pointed out that this period has witnessed various achievements such as the introduction of several mechanisms to assist investors, including DvP and liquidity provision schemes. In addition, QE has launched an initiative to deposit dividends directly in the investors' bank accounts and has introduced a number of new investment tools such as bonds and treasury bills, as well as licensing a number of banks as custodians, launching various new indices, creating QE's Venture Market dedicated to to SME's, and allowing banks to perform financial service activities in the market.
Mr. Al Mansoori expressed confidence that during the next phase Qatar Exchange will continue to achieve further progress and maintain a leading status among the region's markets, taking advantage of what has been accomplished and seeking to provide more services to investors based on the efforts of QE's Qatari management and staff who have deepened their expertise over the years of the partnership. Cooperation between Qatar Exchange and NYSE Euronext will continue in different fields including technology and expertise, Mr. Al Mansoori added.
Stressing that cooperation between the two sides will continue with the development of future mutually-beneficial business initiatives serving investors and issuers of a wide range of financial instruments, , Mr. Al Mansoori conveyed the thanks and gratitude of the Board of QE to NYSE Euronext for their efforts and contributions. "The expertise and leading-edge technology they brought to Qatar Exchange during this period has contributed to the transformation of Qatar Exchange into a world-class exchange", he said.
Mr Al Mansoori also conveyed QE's Board appreciation for the expertise and leading-edge technology provided by NYSE Euronext during the past period, which significantly contributed to QE's achievements. Mr. Al Mansoori also thanked the directors and all the staff of Qatar Exchange in their quest to achieve the objectives aimed at improving services to investors and supporting the national economy of the State of Qatar.
"With the development of Qatar Exchange's cash market and the launch of its Venture Market, most of our joint actions are now complete. And the transfer of operations to a local management team reflects the success of the transformation that has taken place. Looking back, our strategic partnership with the State of Qatar has benefited the Gulf region and customers on a global scale. Looking ahead, we are delighted to pursue our partnership, harnessing our technology assets and expertise - which complement the strong foundation and vision of our partners - to contribute to Qatar Exchange's future success". Said Roland Bellegarde, Group EVP for European Equities and Equity Derivatives at NYSE Euronext.
"On behalf of my colleagues, I would like to extend special thanks to QIA, the Government of Qatar, Qatar Holding, Qatar Financial Markets Authority, Mr. Al Mansoori and the entire leadership of Qatar Exchange for moving forward on this exciting initiative", Mr. Bellegarde added.
It is worth mentioning that the Qatar Investment Authority and NYSE Euronext signed a strategic partnership agreement on 19 June 2009, which aimed to deploy a five-year strategy with the goal of transforming Qatar Exchange into a world-class exchange working to the best international practices and standards. Under that agreement NYSE Euronext held a 20% stake in Qatar Exchange. The two sides later signed an agreement in September 2012 under which Qatar Holding owned 88-percent of Qatar Exchange, with NYSE Euronext holding the remaining 12-percent.
This agreement coincides with the partnership's objectives being achieved. By signing and implementing the recent agreement, Qatar Holding has become the sole owner of Qatar Exchange.