Nasdaq is giving up its bid to buy control of the London Stock Exchange and will sell its $1.58 billion stake in the blue-chip listing venue, reports the Wall Street Journal. Owning almost a third of the shares in the London exchange gave Nasdaq little control over operations, and efforts to buy a bigger stake were rebuffed by London management and shareholders.
"We fought the good fight," Nasdaq's chief executive said in a conference call with investors. Since Nasdaq began making its move 17 months ago, the London Stock Exchange has acquired the Milan exchange. Nasdaq is now moving on to smaller prey, the Nordic exchange OMX.