ICE says it will buy Singapore's SMX exchange

NEW YORK CITY (AFP) - US stock exchange operator ICE, which just concluded its acquisition of NYSE-Euronext, said Tuesday it will buy the Singapore Mercantile Exchange (SMX) in an all cash transaction.

The price was not disclosed.

SMX runs futures markets in Singapore in metals, currencies, energy and farm commodities.

The deal is expected to close by the end of 2013, pending regulatory approvals and closing conditions, ICE said in a statement.

ICE stands for IntercontinentalExchange Group.

SMX is a wholly owned subsidiary of Financial Technologies (India).

Ice said that once the deal was completed, it expected a period of business transition in which ICE will implement technology changes.

In consultation with market participants, clearing members, and regulators, it will evaluate the product and clearing strategy of SMX to ensure the offering meets market participants' needs in the region," the statement said.

Mr David Goone, chief strategy officer at ICE, said: "The acquisition of SMX represents an important step in ICE's growth trajectory as we look to expand our customer base and markets in Asia by establishing a local exchange and clearing presence." He added: "In recent years, Asia-based trading activity in our benchmark energy and interest rate products has been rising as the region increases in importance in global markets.

"ICE has had a presence in Singapore for over a decade and today's announcement is a natural evolution of our strategy to further extend our network of markets across the globe."