WRAPUP 1-TMX buys Atrium Network as Maple extends offer

Wed Aug 3, 2011 10:20am EDT

* Deal allows TMX to expand connectivity in U.S., Europe

* Maple Group extends offer for TMX, seeking approvals

* No value given for Atrium deal, terms 'not material'

By Andrea Hopkins

TORONTO, Aug 3 (Reuters) - TMX Group Inc (X.TO), the operator of the Toronto Stock Exchange, said on Wednesday that it had bought data connectivity provider Atrium Network in a deal that will allow it to fast-track plans to expand into new service areas.

The deal came as Maple Group, a consortium of Canadian banks and pension funds bidding for TMX, extended the deadline for its C$3.8 billion ($3.96 billion) offer to Sept. 30 as it continues to seek regulatory approvals.

TMX said the purchase of Atrium, which will be renamed Atrium TMX, will allow TMX to add content from market centers in Europe and North America. It will expand its data connectivity to 25 venues in 11 countries, including 24 trading venues and 300 sources of data. TMX said there will be room for expansion.

TMX did not disclose the value of the deal, saying the terms were "not material".

"Atrium Network extends our connectivity solutions into Europe and expands our U.S. presence significantly ahead of schedule," Eric Sinclair, president of the company's TMX Datalinx information services division, said in a release.

Maple said it extended its bid for TMX to allow more time for regulators to approve the deal.

A takeover of the TMX Group under Maple's proposal requires approval by Canada's Competition Bureau as well as regulators in four provinces. The group plans to integrate TMX's exchanges with the Alpha Group alternative trading system and the CDS trade clearing house, raising antitrust concerns.

Maple Group, whose members include four of Canada's largest banks, four top pension funds and North America's largest life insurer, has offered C$50 a share for TMX.

The Maple bid was launched as an all-Canadian alternative to a friendly takeover offer for TMX from the London Stock Exchange (LSE.L). The LSE abandoned its bid a month ago when it failed to generate sufficient shareholder support. [ID:nN1E76K29L]

Maple said that if regulatory approvals are not in place by Sept. 30, it would likely extend its offer again. It said it remains committed to its offer and confident it can secure approval by late fall.

($1=$0.96 Canadian) (Additional reporting by Julie Gordon and Euan Rocha; editing by Janet Guttsman and Peter Galloway)