(Adds details, CEO comments)
TEL AVIV, Jan 15 (Reuters) - The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) has made an offer to buy out its shareholders as it aims to list on its own market in 2019, its chief executive said on Monday.
The exchange, which was demutualised and became for-profit in September as part of a plan to boost trading volumes and company listings, is awaiting shareholders' response after making its offer, which valued the bourse at $150 million, CEO Ittai Ben-Zeev told Reuters.
The bourse, which is currently owned by commercial and investment banks, would also approach overseas stock exchange operators about taking a stake before it goes public, he said.
"The argument for an IPO is for publicity and setting an example. It's not that we need capital," Ben-Zeev said on the sidelines of an event at the exchange, adding that the IPO would be open to retail and institutional investors.
TASE aims to become competitive, cheaper and more efficient after seeing around 200 de-listings over the past decade and trading volumes slump. In 2017 stock trading averaged 1.4 billion shekels ($412 million) a day, up slightly from 2016 but well below 2 billion shekels in 2010.
Its 458 listed companies are worth 767 billion shekels.
Ben-Zeev said the IPO would be based on 2018 financial results but the size of the offering would depend on how much of their stakes members opt to sell.
By law, no entity may own more than 5 percent of TASE, and the stakes must be sold within five years or ahead of an IPO.
First International Bank of Israel has the largest stake at 20 percent, followed by Bank Hapoalim at around 13 percent and Bank Leumi with nearly 10 percent.
($1 = 3.4005 shekels) (Editing by Susan Fenton)