Qatar reduces NYSE's stake in local bourse

DUBAI Tue Dec 4, 2012 6:36pm IST

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DUBAI (Reuters) - Transatlantic stock markets operator NYSE Euronext NYX.N, has reduced its stake in Qatar's exchange to 12 percent by selling an 8 percent holding to the Gulf state's sovereign wealth fund, Qatar Holding, the fund said on Tuesday.

The owner of the New York Stock Exchange bought a 20-percent stake in Qatar Exchange in 2009 for $200 million as part of a five-year strategic agreement to transfer knowledge and develop the local exchange.

Qatar Holding now owns 88 percent of the Doha-based bourse, with NYSE Euronext holding the remaining 12 percent stake, the Qatar Exchange said in a statement, without giving any financial details of the transaction.

An official at the Qatar exchange was quoted as saying in the statement that in the three and half years since the NYSE deal most of the aims of the agreement between the two exchanges have been "successfully executed".

"In view of the above, Qatar Holding has expressed its desire to increase its stake in QE from 80 percent to 88 percent; this desire was consistent with NYX's strategy to obtain greater flexibility for strategic capital deployment," the un-named official is quoted as saying in the statement.

The Qatar bourse said the shareholder restructuring was completed in October, when the bourse replaced Andre Went as its chief executive.

Went had joined the exchange in 2009 from NYSE Euronext as part of the strategic agreement.

The Doha-based bourse is home to companies such as Qatar National Bank (QNBK.QA), the second largest lender in the Gulf by market value and petrochemicals firm Industries Qatar IQCD.QA.

(Editing by Greg Mahlich)

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