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Athens Stock Exchange buys 10.24% stake in Belgrade's bourse

posted onAugust 5, 2021
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The Athens Stock Exchange (ATHEX) is joining forces with the Belgrade Stock Exchange (BELEX) in order to collectively strengthen their presence in South East Europe and benefit from new opportunities.

This cooperation is based on two principles: the mutual conviction that their respective capital markets should assume a more influencing role in the sustainable economic development of the local economies and the common vision that only by joining forces regional markets can efficiently and effectively address the intensifying challenges and enhance the offering to issuers, both in the EU and internationally.

In this context ATHEX has proceeded to all the required steps resulting in the Securities Commission of Republic of Serbia's consent to the acquisition of a 10.24% stake in BELEX.

At the same time, BELEX has decided to enhance its trading facilities by migrating its trading activities as Market Operator to the ATHEX's Trading Platform, enlarging the Common Trading Platform pool of liquidity and services. All market participants will benefit from the enlargement of both capital markets and the cross-trading opportunities offered.

AXIA Ventures Group Limited acted as exclusive financial advisor to ATHEX in the transaction, while Alexopoulos & Associates acted as legal advisor.

As a next step, BELEX and ATHEX will closely cooperate with the Serbian Government - Ministry of Finance towards the enhancement of the Serbian Capital Market through the introduction of new products and services that will support the flow of capital from investors from local and international investors to issuers listed in BELEX.

Commenting on the acquisition Socrates Lazaridis, ATHEX CEO, stated:

 "ATHEX, both as a market operator and as a public company has the necessary experience to support BELEX grow its capital market through this strategic alliance. With BELEX along with the Cyprus Stock Exchange and ATHEX on the Common Trading Platform we are taking another step towards our long-term goal for sustainable business by increasing the collective liquidity pool and enlarging our broader regional network.".

For his part, Sinisa Krneta, BELEX CEO, said:

"This alliance is an organic extension of years long successful cooperation and ever-growing business ties between ATHEX and BELEX. In order to contribute to the sustainable development of the Serbian capital market we expect that this new strategic and technological partnership will help us enhance market infrastructure, overcome investment bottlenecks, boost capital formation and generate abundant investment opportunities "

Belgrade Stock Exchange, was established in 1894 and, regardless the activity gaps in its history, it has been committed to the development of entrepreneurship, investment culture and stock market industry in Serbia ever since.

After resuming its operations in 1989 the Belgrade Stock Exchange has been the only market operator of a securities exchange in Serbia. It provides efficient and transparent listing facilities to companies, as well as trading platform to brokerage firms and investors for trading in securities.

Furthermore, BELEX provides services that include market data dissemination, index development and educational trainings.

The Athens Stock Exchange, was established in 1876 and has consistently participated in the financial and business development of the capital markets.

The Athex Group is also part of the SSE Initiative and continues to build capacity around sustainability issues, promote long-term sustainable investment in the capital markets.

The group avails the expertise, the IT infrastructure and offering the full suite of trading and post-trading services through its EMIR and CSDR regulated subsidiaries ATHEX Clear and ATEHX CSD respectively.  

It also provides systems, operations and services to the capital market ecosystem, other market operators and third parties.

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