ICAP Is having a busy day today after previously announcing news in its TriOptima unit. Following on the earlier release, the interdealer has announced the launch of EBS Direct. EBS Direct is a relationship based FX trading platform which will run alongside the ECN’s legacy anonymous network. Users of EBS Direct will be able to access pricing from participating firms that they have a personal connection with. In contrast of the legacy ECN, EBS Direct offers trading in 100,000 unit minimum sizes and 1/10th pip pricing increments.
The launch of EBS Direct occurs as ICAP has seen its FX trading market share decline against Thomson Reuters, FXall, and exchange traded FX products. The space is also expected to become increasingly more competitive as Bloomberg’s FXGO has added FX option trading on their platform to attract users, while rival interdealer Tradition is expecting to launch its TraFXpure product early next year. The new offering from EBS will allow them to compete with both anonymous and public networks. After making changes to its dealing rules and widening trading to ½ pip increments, ICAP has reported that users are seeing increased levels of market depth liquidity. However, the cost has been wider average spreads, which has made the ECN less appealing to buy side firms. The ability for traders to be able to integrate better pricing that they may have from banks that they have personal relationships with should be positive selling point for EBS in the future.
EBS to offer relationship-based, disclosed liquidity with the launch of EBS Direct, With more than 100 customers globally already signed up to the programme
London and New York, 27 November 2012 – EBS, ICAP’s market-leading electronic FX platform, announces the launch of a new service, EBS Direct, providing relationship-based disclosed liquidity, in addition to its traditional anonymous spot FX offering.
EBS Direct will be available alongside EBS’s flagship anonymous matching platform and will deliver increased trading opportunities by enabling liquidity providers to stream tailored prices direct to liquidity consumers.
EBS Direct has the following features:
• EBS Direct prices will be separate from the anonymous prices but integrated within the same screen so users can hit either a disclosed or anonymous price, as they wish
• Price granularity will be in one pip and tenth pip increments
• Minimum size and increments of 100K
• Available through the EBS Workstation, EBS Global Access (browser-based trading solution) and EBS Spot Ai (API-based trading)
EBS Direct leverages EBS’s unparalleled extensive and reliable network, robust infrastructure, unique global footprint and extensive trading floor presence, including thousands of workstations and API connections in over 50 countries. These features, in addition to EBS’s strong brand, reputation and surveillance capabilities, will provide the FX market with a trusted, cost-efficient solution that requires limited technical implementation.
By entering this market, EBS is delivering on its strategic vision to provide the FX industry with innovative and value-added liquidity enhancing tools and services across a range of FX products, focusing on reducing costs, improving trading efficiencies and ensuring a robust and fair market for all participants.
EBS has been working with leading liquidity providers, including: ANZ, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Barclays, BNP Paribas, BofA Merrill Lynch, Citibank, Commerzbank, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Jefferies, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Nomura, Nordea, RBS, Société Générale, Standard Chartered and UBS
More than 100 customers have already signed up to the programme, which is due to launch in December 2012.
Jeff Ward has been appointed as the Global Head of EBS Direct. Jeff, an EBS veteran, is a member of the EBS Executive Management team and in his most recent role was running the EBS Global Sales team.
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Jeff Ward, Global Head of EBS Direct, said:
“By leveraging EBS’s unique network, extensive desktop presence and our position as the market’s trusted partner, we are providing our customers with solutions that will enhance their trading experience. This is the first step in a number of long-term strategic initiatives to provide a complete suite of products and services that benefit both liquidity providers and liquidity consumers.”
Paul Scott, Global Head of eFX Trading at Commerzbank, said:
“We are delighted to see EBS launching into this segment of the market. It will allow Commerzbank greater market reach immediately thanks to EBS’s exceptional network and desktop presence. EBS Direct is an excellent solution for our clients and us, as well as for the FX market as a whole.”
Giovanni Pillitteri, Global Head of FXEM Electronic Trading at Morgan Stanley, said:
“We are excited to expand our long-standing connection with EBS through EBS Direct. EBS Direct will provide a valuable channel for liquidity-based relationship trading.”
Mark Johnson, Global Head of FX Cash Trading, HSBC, said:
“In entering this segment of the market EBS continues to demonstrate its commitment to improving the trading environment and providing an orderly and fair market for all participants.”
Joseph Ziccarelli, Managing Director and COO of Global Foreign Exchange at Jefferies Bache Financial Services, Inc., said:
“EBS is providing us with access to new and improved liquidity through a simple and cost-effective distribution channel. It requires limited technical involvement and yet provides access to new relationship-driven liquidity.”
Alan Clarke, Global FX Product Manager, BBVA, said:
“EBS Direct is a great initiative as it gives us easy access to more sources of liquidity via a leading trading platform that has a proven track record in delivering a resilient and robust network. As we are already connected to EBS, integrating EBS Direct into our systems will be simple and straightforward.”
Eddie Listorti, Global Head FX and Commodities, ANZ, said:
“EBS Direct gives us access to both disclosed and anonymous prices in one place and is a positive step in helping us to optimise our trading, which in turn will allow us to better service our customers.”
Brian Chan, Senior VP, Head of FX Trading at Chinatrust, said:
“The launch of EBS Direct is very timely in providing us with a cost-effective, all-in-one aggregation solution on our existing EBS infrastructure and the ability to trade on ‘direct’ liquidity or through the anonymous market on one platform.”
Gil Mandelzis, Chief Executive Officer, EBS, said:
“This is a very exciting development for EBS and the FX market. EBS is committed to working closely with our customers to provide them with unparalleled distribution across all types of liquidity, as well as exceptional value-add at low cost.
“Jeff Ward brings tremendous leadership, expertise and passion to the programme. We have been able to sign up more than 100 customers within a few weeks by leveraging our unique brand, global presence and exceptional team. EBS Direct opens up a wide range of new opportunities for innovation, value creation and growth for EBS’s existing customers, as well as new customer segments. I would like to thank our customers for their tremendous support as EBS expands its role and partnership with the market.”