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ICE Still Hot

Shares rise after an earnings beat.



(ICE) - Get Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (ICE) Report

profits nearly tripled in the first quarter, fueled by an acquisition expanding its product offering beyond the world of energy futures and commodities.

The Atlanta-based ICE made $55.6 million, or 80 cents a share, compared with $19.7 million, or 33 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue rose 152% to $126.6 million.

Analysts as surveyed by Thomson Financial expected the exchange to earn 72 cents a share on $125 million of revenue.

The exchange has had a busy quarter as it tries to capitalize and expand through the consolidation fever that has gripped the sector.

ICE completed its acquisition of the New York Board of Trade in January. NYBOT specializes in soft commodities products such as sugar and cotton as well as financial commodities. ICE was able to transfer NYBOT's products onto its electronic platform quicker than expected in the quarter, it says.

It is also in a heated battle with the

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

TheStreet Recommends

(CME) - Get CME Group Inc. Class A Report

for control over the

Chicago Board of Trade


. The exchange announced in March a $9.8 billion bid, offering a rival to the CME's $8 billion offer, which the CBOT agreed to in October. The CBOT is still considering both offers.

At the same time, ICE is saddling up with TSX Group's Natural Gas Exchange to trade North American natural gas and Canadian power. TSX Group is also the parent of the Toronto Stock Exchange.

ICE's total average daily volume for its electronic products nearly doubled to 1.2 million contracts a day.

Separately, ICE's CFO Richard Spencer has resigned. The exchange named Scott Hill, a former IBM executive, to succeed Spencer. Spencer will become a non-executive vice chairman at the exchange.

Hill is expected to begin on May 14. Under terms of his initial two-year compensation agreement, his annual salary is $390,000, with a signing bonus of $150,000. Hill's target bonus will be 55% of his salary, according to a regulatory filing.

The stock was trading up $5.38, or 4.4%, to $129.49.