Thanks to Charlotte Crosswell, CEO NASDAQ OMX Europe, for her comments re my recent entry. With her permission, I include her comments in full below:
“NASDAQ OMX Europe sees the next twelve months as a period of immense opportunity. The immediate term will bring uncertainty for other MTFs and customers will be looking for a stable platform with a clear strategy for the future.
NASDAQ OMX Europe was not born with the same “running start” that the other MTFs clearly benefitted from at the end of 2008. But we are fully committed to making a long term success of the platform and have a number of initiatives in place to ensure that the strategy becomes a reality. We are still aiming to get 5% of European share trading by the end of 2009. We are currently offering the most competitive pricing in Europe and our Inet trading engine can handle more than 250,000 transactions per second with a latency of around 300 microseconds. We were also the first MTF to offer pan-European order routing allowing our customers to access multiple pools of liquidity across Europe. Through our order routing technology we are regularly handling double the market share shown in the Fragmentation Index, but unfortunately this is not clear as the index does not show routed volumes. The announcement of Stuart to become Head of Sales was a very exciting move for us and we are looking forward to what he will bring to the role from his 20+ years of experience in the industry.”
What comes across very clearly is NASDAQ’s determination to make a success of its European MTF and I am sure that, as Charlotte says, Stuart Rutherford’s presence will make a definite impact.
Her comments also point to another theme that is emerging amongst MTFs in that they are all beginning to find their own identity. NASDAQ OMX Europe is making a big play of its smart routing capabilities and, if it becomes a successful business in this way, it will be further proof that the traditional relationships between venues, brokers and the buy-side are continuing to change. In a related move, Chi-X is now formally in the technology business since its acquisition of Cicada. The newly formed business Chi-Tech is now actively selling its platform and related technology to venues (the fact that they were exhibitors at the recent FIA conference in Florida is testimony to their global ambitions). I suspect we will see further announcements of diversification as the MTF community continues to adapt to the post credit crunch environment we all now live in.
Finally, congratulations to Lee Hodgkinson who joins SmartPool as CEO from SWX. Lee has a deep understanding of the European trading ecosystem and how it has been transformed by MiFID and technology. He is a great addition to the NYSE Euronext team and I’m sure that he will take the SmartPool initiative forward positively.