* Deal expected to close in first quarter 2016
* Nasdaq says deal will be earnings accretive
TORONTO, Dec 8 (Reuters) - Nasdaq said it would acquire the Canadian unit of alternative equities trading platform Chi-X Global Holdings in a deal giving it direct access to the Canadian equities market.
Nasdaq said the purchase of Chi-X Canada would be accretive to its earnings, excluding transaction-related costs, and deliver attractive returns on capital. The deal, announced on Tuesday, is expected to close in the first quarter of 2016.
Financial terms were not disclosed. Bloomberg reported in November that the deal would value Chi-X Canada at about $100 million.
Nasdaq is looking to diversify its business, moving into new markets and countries. It said the acquisition would expand its North American equities trading business beyond the U.S. and improve the trading experience for customers.
"This acquisition is an important part of our North American strategy as Chi-X handles about 22 percent of the order flow of S&P/TSX Composite securities in Canada," said Nasdaq President Hans-Ole Jochumsen.
Nasdaq said Dan Kessous, Chi-X Canada CEO, would continue to lead the Canadian equities trading business and the Chi-X Canada team would join Nasdaq. (Reporting by Matt Scuffham; Editing by Andrew Hay)