Polish energy exchange GPW aims to acquire rival PolPX by year end
Warsaw Stock Exchange (GPW) hopes to finalise talks to acquire rival energy platform the Polish Power Exchange (PolPX) before the end of the year, local media reported on Wednesday.
GPW operates energy trading platform POEE, but has expressed an interest in consolidating POEE and PolPX since last December. "We should strive to ensure that there is only one power exchange," the chairman of GPW Ludwik Sobolewski has previously said (see EDEM 13 December 2010).
GPW originally confirmed talks in March, but PolPX pointed to the option of public listing instead (see EDEM 15 March 2011).
"These are preliminary discussions, and we are not yet at the stage of negotiations. We are examining the PolPX shareholder expectations about the price and mode of acquisition of PolPX," Sobolewski told journalists at the European Economic Congress 2011 in Katowice. Sobolewski did not rule out issuing bonds to finance the acquisition.
Volumes on POEE are considerably lower than those on PolPX, market participants have previously pointed out. Only 3,397MWh changed hands on the POEE Day-ahead market for 19 May delivery, compared to 66,653.60MWh on PolPX.
But liquidity on GPW's platform has also been hampered because there is still no clarity as to whether POEE qualifies as a regulated platform. Polish law requires all producers to sell 15% of their generation on a regulated power market (see EDEM 23 April 2010). So far, PolPX has been the only regulated platform (see EDEM 10 January 2011).
"It is quite evident that POEE wants to take over PolPX because the latter is a lot more liquid," a Polish market participant commented. "There is a lot of political will behind the GPW taking over the power exchange, so I have no doubt that the deal will go ahead."
GPW was unavailable for comment on Wednesday. SR
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