Exclusive: GMO Click Officially Sets-up Shop in London under FCA Authorisation

One of the world’s largest currency derivatives providers has been granted authorisation under the UK’s financial watchdog. GMO CLICK gains

Japanese origin FX broker, GMO CLICK Securities (GMO), has been granted authorisation under the homage of Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The broker joins its fellow country providers looking beyond Tokyo, as the force of London’s powerful status attracts the masses.

GMO registered in England & Wales as GMO Click UK Limited under the company’s house, received its regulatory approval on the first of September 2014. According to data on the FCA’s registration page, the firm is licensed to hold client money and deal as a principal. Under the Permissions tab (on the registration page) the FCA adds that the broker holds a matched principal license, where it passes its order flow to another authorised provider.

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Going Global

GMO was recognised as one of the fastest growing international brokers, according to Forex Magnates’ research in 2012. In the same year the firm had incorporated its UK entity, the official formation date was October 2012. The UK setup follows on from the firm’s international outreach programme which started in 2011 through the establishment of an operation in Hong Kong. The domestic firm is regulated under the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission.

The firm’s President, Hideyuki Takashima, spoke to Forex Magnates during an interview where he shared his firm’s expansion strategy, he said: “We will continue expanding through researching other regions based on different factors ranging from market growth to local regulations. With our ability to provide competitive spreads and low trading costs.”

Hideyuki Takashima
Hideyuki Takashima

The firm is part of Japan’s trillion dollar club, a collection of brokers whose total monthly volumes top one trillion US dollars in notional value. The vibrancy of ‘Abenomics’ in 2013 led to increased activity in the yen thus impacting trading activity, in June and July of 2013 the firm topped $1 trillion in volumes.

GMO’s UK office is situated in London’s financial district at Becket House on the Old Jewry.  It offers clients a multi-asset offering thus allowing them to trade forex, indices and commodities on a range of platforms. GMO also offers financial spread betting to residents of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland.

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Data from the FCA register shows that GMO has a number of staff members covering senior management, compliance and customer service roles. The operation is led by CEO Tomitaka Ishimura, who holds the CF1 and CF3 senior management functions. Jacqueline Lefere is the CF10, CF10a and CF11, covering compliance functions that are essential for regulated firms.

Mr. Ishimura, the UK operations CEO, spoke to Forex Magnates about the group and how the UK division fits into the wider strategy: “We will be at the core of the GMO CLICK Group’s global expansion, and will be offering trading services to investors worldwide centered around FX, which has been at the foundation of the Group’s success to date.
The GMO CLICK Group’s philosophy is a commitment to providing a trading environment which makes starting investing simple, and interacting with financial products from around the world interesting and enjoyable.

This philosophy is embodied by all of our Group companies, including GMO CLICK Securities which is the world’s largest retail FX provider by volume, and we will be focusing all of our efforts on providing a best-in-class service which satisfies investors in all ways, by leveraging our in-house technological expertise to provide a trading platform which combines ease-of-use and extremely competitive spreads and trading conditions.”

The FCA license gives GMO reach into the wider European market, under MiFID, brokers can exercise their efforts across all member countries.

London Is the ‘New’ Home

GMO joins the growing number of providers from the Asia-pacific region setting up units in the UK, such as Hirose & GulliverFX, the trend signifying London’s stance as the epicentre of global FX trading. The notion was reinforced when London held onto the number one position as the most liquid centre for FX with 41% market share, according to the 2013 BIS Survey.

Since taking over as the UK’s financial watchdog, the FCA has been examining the operating landscape and taking action where necessary to ensure it safeguards the capital’s reputation as a world-leading financial services location. Forex Magnates expects London to hold onto the world’s most attractive market for FX and derivatives trading, however people close to the regulator are expecting more stringent rules and regulations to come into force, particularly in the way firms on-board clients and deal with client money.

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