DIFC pays $415 mn for British tech firm

Tech firm SmartStream is latest investment for Dubai International Finance Centre

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By  Joel Bowman Published  November 12, 2007

The Dubai International Finance Centre's (DIFC) global spending spree is set to continue with the addition of a British technology firm to the growing list of acquisitions for the rapidly expanding financial hub.

After purchasing stakes in Euronext, HSBC and Deutsche Bank, the DIFC - which owns the Dubai International Financial Exchange (DIFX) - is deep in contract negotiations to buy SmartStream, a British-based technology firm, reported the Daily Telegraph today.

DIFC will purchase SmartStream for £200 million ($414 million) from Private Equity firm TA Associates, who abandoned plans to list the company on the London Stock Exchange, citing unfavourable market conditions.

According to the UK daily, "SmartStream provides technology that streamlines back-office processing for securities trading to 75 of the world's 100 largest banks."

The purchase of SmartStream will enable the DIFX to build a globally competitive trading platform, further energizing the bourse's attractiveness for foreign investors and making it a truly viable destination for the vast pools of capital liquidity currently awash in the broader markets.

Deutsche Bank and Close Brothers have been hired to advise the DIFC and Smartstream respectively on the deal.

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