What do you think the priorities will be for retail brokers in 2019?
I think the priorities for retail brokers this year will be on maintaining high quality counterparties for hedging, making sure that they are compliant with all the regulatory changes affecting the retail space, and for FCA-only regulated firms to navigate a Brexit business alternative. At Stater, we can certainly assist with the first part of this.
The Australian market is thriving. Where do you see the market opportunity for Stater in Australia?
I have been very impressed with the Australian market for a number of years. It is a well regulated market that, as yet, has not restricted leverage. The majority of firms there operate with a strong capital base and a deep understanding of the market (in terms of client acquisition, risk management and so on). They are also well placed to service the Asian time zone which has been the strongest retail driver geographically. The changes affecting the market structure in Europe play into the hands of the larger Australian brokers.
Australian retail brokers and hedge funds have been an important market for Prime of Prime brokers since my days at Citi and, unsurprisingly, Australia is a key market for Stater. In fact, we have been building a strong product to service their requirements, both for institutional calibre FX but also for CFDs, which are an important product for Australian firms.
You’ve recently spent time in Dubai. How does the market differ from other regions?
Yes, we were in Dubai in December which is an interesting market with a strong culture of trading, particularly commodities. There’s a strong presence of regional brokers that cater to the local market as well as outposts of international firms in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). There are also a number of hedge funds and family offices that use Dubai and the UAE as a base.
Stater’s strong FX and metals offering is very applicable to the Dubai/UAE market and the broader Arab Peninsular - Jordan and Lebanon are two regions with a history of FX and Futures trading too, and there’s a growing retail FX scene in Egypt. I believe the strength of our offering allied to the security of dealing with a well-capitalised FCA regulated firm that is strictly STP is a value proposition that will continue to gain traction in the region.
With so many global market opportunities, why do you believe London is the best place for your business to be based?
I believe that London is an ideal location from which we can achieve our global growth ambitions in Europe, Australia, the Middle East and Asia.
London, specifically for FX, has a lot of historical and structural advantages. Put simply, most of the biggest Liquidity Providers are based here and trade here. All of the major credit intermediaries (the Bank Prime Brokers) are based here. All the major institutional technology companies are based here or have significant presence in the UK, especially in London. The world’s institutional hub of FX experience and infrastructure is in London. For firms like Stater, being plugged into this ecosystem and having it on our doorstep as well as being based in a strong regulatory environment is a massive advantage over our peers who are not based in London.
What is your top priority as a business over the next 12 months?
The top priority, as with any business, is to be commercially successful! For 2019, there are a number of initiatives we are looking to complete that will further cement our position. Our focus is on growing the business not only in the retail broker space but amongst hedge funds, family offices and professional traders too.
Stater Global Markets offers institutional clients direct access to Tier 1 bank and non-bank liquidity, clearing and institutional grade technology. The FCA regulated firm is a wholly owned subsidiary of SBL Holdings Ltd. For further information, visit:
staterglobalmarkets.com or contact email@example.com