State your Company, name and position please:
David Cooney, CEO and co-founder MahiFX
Describe your company with three words:
Technology meets art.
Describe your company with greater detail:
MahiFX offers the retail FX and commodities trading sector the facility to trade OTC Forex and precious metals with the sophisticated platform technology and institutional level pricing previously found primarily in the interbank trading space. MahiFX is a Market-Maker and so we aggregate and manage the resulting risk and are therefore able to strip out the brokerage layers and costs that retail clients have to pay to other brokers. We afford our clients unrivalled direct access to highly competitive market maker rates, a wide range of analytical tools to accommodate their varying trading styles and sophistication levels, educational resources, a hugely entertaining and informative blog, a willingness to actively listen and respond to customer feedback and a commitment to continually engineering platform improvements both in response to and in anticipation of trader wish-lists.
What specifically do you offer to the Forex Industry?
The primary vulnerability of the majority of providers in the retail FX space is that they cannot form their own FX rates, nor run their own risk. Instead, the incumbent providers source their rates from the major banks and, to a large degree, pass the risk straight back to those banks. In effect, therefore, the incumbents are brokers and so must add a brokerage margin to the interbank rates they source in order to be viable. In essence, MahiFX offers a wholesale pricing and risk management methodology directly to the retail market through competitive rates and a superior customer interface and user experience.
What specifically do you offer the retail traders?
We bring a different type of expertise to the retail space. We are unique in combining multiple years of experience in FX trading and risk management with elite technology expertise gained in the investment banking market. So that translates into being able to offer retail traders access to institutional level technology and pricing.
Why should retail traders choose you instead of others?
We have a number of defining qualities that positively differentiate us from other platforms. Our industry-leading precise spreads, technology, execution speeds and streamlined, customisable user interface which caters to all trader ability levels is proving to be of great appeal to our growing community of traders.
In addition, we provide traders with a more inclusive, level playing field. MahiFX has no minimum deposit requirements and no minimum trade sizes which, combined, serves to give a greater number of traders access to the markets. Traders also know from the outset that they will not be caught out by any unexpected charges. We operate transparently. MahiFX does not charge either implicit or explicit brokerage fees. There are no hidden fees, no ‘from’ prices and no unexpected layers of cost. Traders can be assured that with MahiFX, the spreads they see are the spreads they get.
We also have an express commitment to continually engineering the platform to improve the user experience and openly engage with our customers to harness their feedback on what platform enhancements and new functionality they would like see. And whenever possible, we then proceed to develop and provide them.
Would you say you are a fresh newcomer to the FX industry or are you the experienced veteran?
Well I was a fresh newcomer quite some time ago . . . Since that time I have clocked up nearly two decades of interbank trading experience in the FX Spot and Derivatives trading arenas. And I am supported by an great team with a wealth of experience and expertise across all the disciplines requisite for developing such a technologically sophisticated trading platform.
Why should current graduates or people looking for a job in Forex consider working for your company?
As a financial technology company our team is populated by a very wide range of differing personalities and talent. Unlike many companies that seem to invariably transition into a bureaucratic structure and nature we prefer a relatively flat structure where there is no place for ego or empire building and where character remains one of the defining attributes of people who are in a team focused on the one overarching goal of delivering something truly innovative in the FX space.
What are your present issues and challenges?
We like to keep our team busy with staying ahead of what our clients request and ensuring that the platform is constantly evolving to meet their needs and wish-lists of features and functionalities. As we built the platform ourselves we have the distinct advantage of being able to incorporate client requests with very quick turnarounds.
As this is a well known cut throat industry, what means do you use to survive and to excel in such a competitive environment ?
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We excel in the competitive FX environment by virtue of our talented team, our technology and our demonstrated commitment to our clients. The technology underpinning the platform and its intuitive GUI provides our traders with a highly sophisticated yet user-friendly trading experience. We are quick to respond to client requests and we actively seek client input into our platform development programme. And we have worked hard on our branding and identity to ensure that we stand out from our competitors.
Are you focusing on the local market or the global one?
We actively welcome traders from any and all countries where regulations permit them to trade with us.
Where do you see your company in a year or two’s time?
We see the company, platform and client servicing standards steadily evolving and improving – as a result of both our driving ambition and in response to client feedback. We would also like to be in vanguard of dispelling some of the myths that exist in the retail space with regards to market making and lead the way in building a reputation for transparency, fairness and integrity.
What is branding to you and why is it important or not?
Branding represents your promise to the customer and so, yes, I do think it is important. Our branding seeks to explain and illustrate how MahiFX’s main company and platform attributes of Strength, Perfection, Precision, Control and Intelligence shape our technology, values and offering to retail FX investors.
What are you predictions for the coming years of the Forex industry as a whole?
I think we will see increased industry scrutiny by regulatory bodies and increased efforts to ensure that companies are sufficiently capitalized in the interests of client protection – and that’s a good thing.
What do you think the Forex industry as a whole can/should improve?
Price and trade transparency is considered lower in the spot FX market as compared to other equity markets. The industry should work on improving transparency across the board and should also promote a more robust stance on responsible trading and limit excessive leverage for market participants.
Do you think you as a company and the industry is transparent enough?
While we can’t speak for other companies or the industry as a whole we certainly consider ourselves to be entirely transparent.
Do you read Forex Magnates Quarterly report?
Absolutely, it’s a great resource for industry news and analysis.
Are you using the social network channels to reach more exposure and transparency?
We are devoting increasing resources to our presence on social network sites and view social channels as a powerful means to engage with communities that have specific interests and needs, in addition to being able to share news and developments about MahiFX. We are somewhat selective in terms of what social channels we have a presence on as it’s just not possible to have a meaningful presence on all of them.
Our approach to social media is to use it partake in it not only to broadcast news about the company, but also to gauge and monitor market sentiment and respond to queries and requests. Having real conversations with clients and listening to their feedback enables greater transparency and the opportunity to find out what really matters to the different trading communities. One of our key findings is how important educational resources are to traders. We instituted a new series on the MahiFX blog ‘An Intern Learns’ and that has garnered a huge following on social, with many readers communicating how helpful they find the content.
On the social note…Tell me something personal about yourself, such as your favorite film, holiday, and hobby or football team:
For thrills my main hobbies are flying helicopters and watching the All Blacks. I’m also an avid reader.