Intercontinental Exchange's Trayport Sale Order Upheld by UK Competition Appeal Tribunal

ICE appeal against CMA order to divest Trayport platform over reduction of market competitiveness rejected by UK court.

City of London
Based in London, the Trayport platform cost ICE $650 million to acquire in December 2015.

The UK’s Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) has upheld a ruling by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) that Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) must divest its energy and commodities trading platform, Trayport.

ICE acquired Trayport in December 2015 in a $650 million deal but was ordered to divest the platform in October last year, after the CMA concluded that market participants had a “high level of dependence” on the platform due to weak alternatives and high barriers to entry, meaning ICE would be in a position to reduce competition between itself and its rivals leading to “increased fees for execution and clearing, and worse terms offered to traders.” 

While ICE appealed the decision, the CAT has ruled in favor of the CMA and has upheld the decision that ICE must sell the Trayport platform to a CMA-approved buyer.

ICE said that it was “disappointed by the CAT’s ruling” in a statement and that it would “review the CAT’s judgment and consider our options, including the possibility of a further appeal to the Court of Appeal.”

The CAT, however, did agree with ICE to overturn the CMA’s ruling that the exchange operator should not be allowed to put its data onto the Trayport platform.

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