TMX’s Kloet Says Alpha to Continue After Takeover

TMX Group Inc. Chief Executive Officer Thomas Kloet said Alpha Trading Systems, the competing exchange TMX gained after its C$3.73 billion ($3.83 billion) takeover by a group of banks and pension funds, has a future under the Toronto Stock Exchange owner.

“We see value in the Alpha marketplace continuing to be there as a product in the TMX Group,” Kloet, 54, said today in an interview after a special shareholders meeting in Toronto.

Kloet cited Alpha’s continuous limit order book and IntraSpread product as “valuable” parts of Canada’s capital markets.

TMX investors today approved the takeover and a share swap as part of the transaction that combines Canada’s main stock exchanges and derivatives bourse with the country’s securities clearing house. The takeover by Maple Group Acquisition Corp. is expected to close by Sept. 14, subject to court approval, the Toronto-based company said.

Alpha began in November 2008 as an alternative trading platform and evolved to become a full-fledged stock exchange earlier this year, with about 17 percent of the Canadian market for trading. Its CEO, Jos Schmitt, has stayed on through the TMX takeover process.

“Jos is a valuable member of the Alpha team, he’s worked both proactively and constructively with us,” Kloet said. “He’s still a part of the team.”

Acquisitions

TMX will consider acquisitions including takeovers of other exchanges as long as it makes “strategic” sense and adds to earnings, Kloet said. He reiterated his interest in expanding in the U.S. with an exchange for smaller companies.

“I think it’s something obviously we think we’re pretty good at,” Kloet said. “So we’ll look at opportunities like that, and broader.”

Assimilating Alpha and the Canadian Depository for Securities Ltd. remain TMX’s “first order of business,” Kloet said. “We must keep our eye on the ball on getting the synergies and really achieving what we want to achieve by this aggregation of companies.”

(Corrects to IntraSpread product in third paragraph)
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