E*Trade Nabs Versus

E*Trade Group Inc. Thursday acquired E*Trade
license holder Versus
Technologies Inc.
in a deal valued at nearly $175 million.

Security holders of Versus, a Canadian-based provider of
electronic securities trading services for institutional and retail
investors, will receive one share of E*Trade Group for each share they own.

Through the acquisition, E*Trade will gain access to the Versus retail
institutional client base, as well as The Versus Network, a scalable
proprietary electronic trading platform, which is expected to be
into E*Trade’s product offerings worldwide.

The acquisition complements E*Trade’s plan to establish a global
cross-border trading network for institutional and retail customers
worldwide, according to Christos M. Cotsakos, chairman and
executive officer of E*TRADE Group Inc.

“We believe Versus Technologies
will directly contribute to the development of our all-electronic,
financial hub, which will ultimately link 20 of the top international
equities markets,” he said. “Together, we’ll now be able to expand our
capabilities to
empower success for customers not only in Canada but throughout the world.”

Canadian institutional investors using The Versus Network represent more
than 75
percent of Canadian listed equity under management. The Versus Network
supports the equivalent of approximately 13 percent of the average trading
volume on The Toronto Stock Exchange.

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