CME Group to take 90 percent stake in Joint Venture owning Dow Jones Indexes business

CME Group to take 90 percent stake in Joint Venture owning Dow Jones Indexes business

10/02/10

CME Group, the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, and Dow Jones & Company today announced that they have signed a definitive agreement in which CME Group will take a 90 percent ownership interest and Dow Jones will take a 10 percent ownership interest in a new joint venture that will own the Dow Jones Indexes, which includes The Dow Jones Industrial Average and approximately 130,000 index properties. Pending approval by regulators and completion of customary closing conditions, the transaction is expected to close during the first quarter of 2010.

"We are pleased to strengthen our partnership with Dow Jones," said CME Group Executive Chairman Terry Duffy. "Joining the resources and expertise of one of the world's leading marketplaces for equity index derivatives trading with a premier index provider is an exciting next step that will allow us to expand our index and market data offerings as well as to fuel growth opportunities in our equity index complex. We expect this transaction will allow us to further diversify our revenue streams, creating sustainable new value for our customers and shareholders." 

"Our majority interest in this venture represents an important new milestone in CME Group's transformation into a global financial services company, further diversifying our global product development capabilities and allowing us to reach new customers in both the institutional and retail market segments," said Craig Donohue, CME Group Chief Executive Officer. "We look forward to continuing the strong relationships that Dow Jones has developed with clients and other leading exchanges that offer exchange traded funds, equity index options and structured products which complement CME Group's equity index contracts."

Dow Jones & Company will contribute the Dow Jones Indexes business, valued at $675 million, to the joint venture. CME Group will contribute certain market data services, valued at $607.5 million, to the joint venture. The venture also will raise approximately $613 million in third-party debt which will be used to pay a $607.5 million distribution to Dow Jones.

Terms of the agreement provide for the joint venture to license the Dow Jones name for the new index services business on a long-term basis. Ownership of the Dow Jones brand, including trademarked names, will remain with Dow Jones. The managing editor of The Wall Street Journal will continue to participate in decisions regarding constituent stock selection for the Dow Jones Industrial Average and other index products. Building on the strong brand and market expertise of both CME Group and DJI, the partnership will also expand the global reach of its index creation, calculation services and market data businesses across complementary asset classes, including cash, derivatives and customized OTC markets. 

Barclays Capital is acting as financial advisor to CME Group, and Kirkland & Ellis LLP is acting as CME Group's legal advisor.