Borse Dubai has sold its significant stake in the London Stock Exchange, sending the British group's share price plunging on Thursday.
"Borse Dubai has today sold its shareholding in London Stock Exchange Group plc, representing approximately 17.4 percent of the share capital in the company," said a statement issued by the Gulf group, which was the biggest single shareholder in the LSE.
The stake is worth £1.53 billion ($2.29 billion, 2.08 billion euros) according to the LSE share price at the close of trading on Wednesday, at 2,538 pence.
In Thursday deals following the announcement, LSE crashed to 2,288 pence, down 9.85 percent on London's benchmark FTSE 100 index, which fell 1.15 percent to 6,910.79 points overall in morning deals.
"While details remain scant, the sale was probably worth around £1.5 billion and ends a... reduction process designed to crystallise handsome gains thanks to many years of hopes of another round of exchange mergers, which have seen LSE shares double from 2007 levels," said Mike van Dulken, head of research at trading group Accendo Markets.
The Qatar Investment Authority takes over as the biggest LSE shareholder. QIA cut its holding to about 10 percent from 15 percent last year according to Bloomberg News.