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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 February 2006, 06:40 GMT
Australian bank extends LSE offer
The headquarters of the London Stock Exchange
The LSE has called on shareholders to reject Macquarie's offer
Australia's Macquarie Bank has extended the deadline for shareholders of the London Stock Exchange to back its 1.5bn ($2.65bn) takeover bid.

Macquarie said LSE shareholders now had until 14 February to accept its 580 pence-per-share offer.

The news came as Macquarie revealed that so far it had won the backing of just 0.4% of LSE investors.

The London exchange's board said it continued to "recommend strongly" that shareholders reject the offer.

'Quality and strength'

Earlier this month the LSE, which is Europe's biggest equity market, accused Macquarie of trying to buy it "on the cheap".

The Australian bank, which already has UK investments ranging from BBC Broadcast to the M6 Toll Road, launched its takeover bid in December.

Macquarie hoped the move would outflank rival suitors for the LSE, including the pan-European Euronext exchange and Germany's Deutsche Boerse.

It described the bid as "attractive, certain and deliverable in cash".

However, the LSE's board responded by saying it "ignored the quality and strength of the business".


SEE ALSO:
LSE spurns 'cheap' Australian bid
11 Jan 06 |  Business
LSE rejects 'derisory' takeover
09 Dec 05 |  Business
LSE seeks end to bid speculation
03 Nov 05 |  Business
LSE takeover conditions set out
01 Nov 05 |  Business
Australian bank considers LSE bid
15 Aug 05 |  Business


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