NYSE Euronext and Deutsche Boerse plan to call a combined company DB NYSE Group and will likely sidestep thorny issues of technology in a bid to strike a deal by Tuesday, two persons close to the negotiations said.
The Frankfurt and the New York-based exchange operators are edging toward an outline deal to be agreed on Tuesday or Wednesday of next week, one source said on Saturday.
Both figures said the sides have still not finalized a merger document which can be presented to Deutsche Boerse's board of directors, confirming earlier reports.
Decisions over leadership, including the composition of a combined company's board, have been made, sources said earlier this week.
In their talks, the two sides are hammering out a framework deal which focuses on functions and personalities but key issues such as over information technology (IT) are likely to be postponed.
How you make the details work later on is a different matter, one of these people said.
So rather than deciding right now which technology platform to use for derivatives trading on a group level, the parties are seeking to agree on a person for IT coordination.
This person will later decide whether to use Deutsche Boerse's Eurex or Euronext's Liffe technology, or whether to develop a new platform using staff from both camps.
It is not yet decided whether the combined group will take the legal form of SE or an NV (the corporate designation) for the Amsterdam based legal entity, the person said.
Despite the uncertainty, there is quiet optimism that the two sides will be able to make an announcement early next week.
Unlike when talks between the two companies were disrupted by a leak in December 2008, negotiations have now reached a much more mature level, and are more likely to bear fruit, a person close to the deal said.
The two powerhouse exchange operators said on Wednesday they were in advanced talks to merge, just hours after London Stock Exchange unveiled a bid for Canadian market operator TMX Group Inc.
Deutsche Boerse declined to comment, NYSE Euronext could not be reached for comment.
(Reporting by Edward Taylor and Philipp Halstrick; Additional reporting by Anika Ross; editing by Patrick Graham)