Soros to buy 4.0 percent stake in Bombay bourse: report

MUMBAI, July 28, 2010 (AFP) – Billionaire investor George Soros is close to sealing a 40-million-dollar deal to buy Dubai Holding’s 4.0 percent stake in the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), the Financial Times reported Wednesday. If the purchase goes through, it would be the latest in a series of strategic foreign investments in India’s stock and derivatives exchanges.

Soros Fund Management is planning to pay 40 million dollars for the stake in Asia’s oldest stock exchange based on a total valuation of around one billion dollars, a person involved in the negotiations told the Financial Times.

Dubai Holding is owned by the emirate’s ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum.

Investor interest in the BSE has been spurred by an overhaul instigated by its chief executive, Madhu Kannan, who has focused on building the BSE brand name, upgrading technology and improving transparency.

Canadian financier Thomas Caldwell and private equity group Argonaut each acquired minority stakes in the BSE earlier this year.

Last month, Singaporean sovereign wealth fund Temasek took a 5.0 percent stake in the rival National Stock Exchange of India for more than 145 million dollars.