Deutsche Boerse CEO on the hunt for acquisitions

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Deutsche Boerse’s (DB1Gn.DE) chief executive is on the lookout for acquisitions as one of the pillars of the German stock exchange operator’s growth strategy.

FILE PHOTO: Theodor Weimer, new CEO of German stock exchange Deutsche Boerse AG, informs the media about the planned renovations at the trading floor of Frankfurt’s stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, January 29, 2018. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach/File Photo

Theodor Weimer, who took the reins on Jan. 1, told shareholders on Wednesday that acquisitions were “part of our strategy, in particular where it would complement our business”.

Acquisition priorities include fixed-income securities, energy products, currencies, services for investment funds, data and indices, he said.

But Weimer also ruled out some mega deals, a year after the collapse of Deutsche Boerse’s proposed merger with London Stock Exchange (LSE.L).

“Transformational transactions, whereby we thereafter no longer hold majority, or our headquarters is no longer in Hesse, are not an option for us,” he said.

Weimer is seeking to open a new chapter after Deutsche Boerse last year became entangled in an insider trading scandal, failed in the attempted LSE merger and issued a profit warning.

Soon after taking the helm, Weimer announced that he would review the company’s strategy and last month Deutsche Boerse outlined the broad cornerstones of its plans.

Weimer’s comments at Wednesday’s annual general meeting flesh out that roadmap and further details are expected later this month.

Another pillar of the strategy is organic growth and investment, with Weimer saying that Britain’s exit from the European Union offers business opportunities.

Deutsche Boerse aims to win a quarter of the lucrative euro clearing market from London.

“It is up to us, in the interest of our customers, to provide a well-organized transition to a new European market

order,” Weimer said.

The CEO has also been studying cost cuts and staff reductions. He said that up to 50 management-level employees could lose their jobs.

Reporting by Tom Sims; Editing by Maria Sheahan and David Goodman

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