Further to the announcements made by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) and London Stock Exchange Group (LON:LSE) in relation to HKEX’s possible offer for the entire issued and to be issued share capital of LSEG, HKEX confirms that it does not intend to make an offer for LSEG and is consequently bound by the restrictions under Rule 2.8 of the Code, save in the circumstances set out below.
The Board of HKEX continues to believe that a combination of LSEG and HKEX is strategically compelling and would create a world-leading market infrastructure group. Despite engagement with a broad set of regulators and extensive shareholder engagement, the Board of HKEX is disappointed that it has been unable to engage with the management of LSEG in realising this vision, and as a consequence has decided it is not in the best interests of HKEX shareholders to pursue this proposal.
Under Note 2 on Rule 2.8 of the Code, HKEX, and any person acting in concert with HKEX, reserves the right to announce an offer or possible offer or make or participate in an offer or possible offer for LSEG or to take any other action which would otherwise be restricted under Rule 2.8 of the Code within six months following the date of this announcement in the following circumstances: (a) with the agreement or consent of the board of LSEG; (b) if any third party announces a firm intention to make an offer for LSEG; (c) if LSEG announces a “whitewash” proposal (see Note 1 of the Notes on Dispensations from Rule 9 of the Code) or a reverse takeover (as defined in the Code); (d) if the UK Panel on Takeovers and Mergers (the “Panel“) determines that there has been a material change of circumstances; or (e) otherwise with the consent of the Panel.
HKEX, and any person acting in concert with HKEX, reserves the right to acquire and/or offer to acquire LSEG shares or interests in LSEG shares subject to and in accordance with Rule 2.8 of the Code.