02.08.2017
By Rob Daly

Bats Acquisition Nearly Complete

The Chicago Board Options Exchange has one last hurdle to clear before it can complete its planned acquisitions of Bats Global Markets, by the end of the first quarter. which it announced in late September 2016.

Edward Tilly, CBOE

Edward Tilly, CBOE

“We recently received regulatory approval from the Dutch central bank, which leaves us with one remaining regulatory approval for the United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority,” said Edward Tilly, CEO of the CBOE during the CBOE’s fourth-quarter earnings call.

Tilly expects that the $3.2 billion cash and stock deal will increase the exchange operator’s non-transactional revenue stream on the first day of ownership.

However, it will take three years to recognize the total $50 million in run-time synergies that CBOE officials stated in September.

There will be synergies right out of the box, such as c-suite redundancies, outside auditors, and insurance, according to Alan Dean, CFO of the CBOE.

“But the migration from our platform to their platform, the realization of synergies are real, but they will take time to realize,” he said. “And you won’t know for sure how you are doing against your targets until later on.”

In the meantime, the CBOE established a strategic integration office and steering committee that reports to Tilly.

“We are ready integration-wise should that come earlier, but we are still planning for the end of the quarter,” said Tilly. “If things change and we get the FCA’s approval, we will let you know.”

The CBOE is financing the cash portion of the purchase via a $1 billion five-year delayed-draw term loan as well as a $650-million 3.65% senior note, which is due in 2027.

“Combined, this secures the $1.65 billion to finance the cash portion of our pending transaction of Bats as well as the repayment of Bats’ existing indebtedness and certain transaction costs,” said Dean. “The interest and fees on the senior notes are expected to result in an interest expense of about $24.2 million for the full year of 2017, a little over $6 million each quarter. We plan to draw on the term loan upon the closing of Bats acquisition.”

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