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Stock exchanges: Prague makes it a hat-trick for Wiener Börse

The past few months have been significant for Austrian exchange Wiener Börse’s attempts to position itself as the prime conduit for portfolio investment in central and eastern Europe. In a notable run it has managed to secure majority control of three exchanges in the region. Most recently, it signed an agreement in November to acquire a 92.4% stake in the Prague Stock Exchange, one of the largest in central and eastern Europe, with a market capitalization of about €40 billion.

The deal, which still requires final approval by the Czech central bank, marks a notable hat-trick for the Austrian bourse: it won a competitive tender to secure a 81.01% holding in the Ljubljana Stock Exchange in Slovenia in October, and in September increased its stake in the Budapest Stock Exchange to 50.43% following the acquisition of stakes held by three Austrian banks. In cooperation with Oesterreichische Kontrollbank, Wiener Börse now controls 68.798% of the Hungarian bourse, having taken an initial stake in the exchange in 2004.

As well as its acquisitions in the region, Wiener Börse cooperates closely with other central and eastern European exchanges, most notably Romania’s Bucharest Stock Exchange and the two Bosnian bourses in Sarajevo and Banja Luka.

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