FXTG, an FX and CFD broker based in Australia, has re-launched as ‘FXTG Australia’ amid a root-and-branch overhaul of all of its systems, processes and operations. FXTG has been operating in Australia since obtaining its ASIC license in 2005. Over the past 5 years, the company has grown sporadically, offering spot FX and equity index CFDs via MetaTrader.
In recent years, under the leadership of ex-CEO Yossi Ashkenazi, the company had stagnated and failed to provide robust trading services that attracted traders. The firm was unable to offer trading services at a competitive cost and the services that were offered were often plagued by technical issues. The company had also struggled to retain clients in an increasingly competitive retail market.
According to current FXTG CEO, Stavro D’Amore, the previous management structure “undermined FXTG’s potential and prevented the company from growing.” In a candid interview with Forex Magnates, Mr. D’Amore explained his ambitious vision for the company’s future. Mr. D’Amore underlined saying, “FXTG’s prior association with Dealserv has now completely ceased with Australian-based Directors now in charge.”
“The most important thing was to stem the damage done by the previous management team. With a host of cost-cutting and efficiency savings implemented over the past two months including a switch from Leverate to LMAX for FX liquidity, the opening of a new office and wholesale staff changes, the firm is now on an even keel and going in the right direction” said Mr. D’Amore. Adding, “Over the next 6 months, our existing clients should notice more and more improvements in all aspects of the business.”
Turning over a New Leaf
FXTG Australia is now operating from Melbourne’s central business district, has a representative office in Brisbane and opened a branch in China to support the company’s burgeoning growth in the region. The company’s new Chief Operations Officer (COO), Daniel Kirby says: “We have restructured the company from the ground up to ensure we are commercially sustainable and properly risk managed.”
Stavro D’Amore’s vision is for FXTG to be Australia’s “most approachable broker.” The charismatic CEO is planning to open branches across Australia with walk-in style offices that allow clients to visit the company at any time and speak to FXTG representatives at their convenience.
“We want to move past the negative stigma attached to the Forex industry as a whole. By presenting a completely transparent way of operating, we will show retail traders that FX companies can operate with the highest level of professionalism and honesty towards its clients,” says Mr. D’Amore.
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“All clients are welcome to attend our offices at any time without prior confirmation. We are looking to create a welcoming environment where both visitors and clients feel at home. We are working on several initiatives that will directly assist clients such as personal coaching, one-to-one seminars, 24 hour interactive support via remote online tools and a dedicated account manager for every client,” he added.
Dotting the I’s and Crossing the T’s
From a purely technical perspective, FXTG Australia is intent on pricing itself as competitively as possible. The company is currently offering the tightest EUR/USD spread of 0.22 pips amongst comparable retail brokers as seen on MyFXBook and is eager to compete on price as well as additional services.
The broker has now simplified its previously convoluted account structure and will now offer three account types – Standard, STP Professional and ECN with progressively better spreads and lower trading costs depending on the type of liquidity and execution required by the trader.
FXTG has revamped all aspects of its business and is now operating a thriving business in China. The company opened an office in Shanghai earlier this year and currently employs 4 people with expansion plans on the horizon. Mr. D’Amore also admits to considering widening FXTG’s market presence by introducing binary options in the foreseeable future.
Having gone through wholesale changes in a bid to improve efficiency and streamline operations, FXTG’s Management team is confident that prior mismanagement at the firm has been corrected and the company can now focus on providing robust trading services in Australia and China as core markets with the APAC region being the broader focus in the medium-long term.
The Australian FX and CFD industry at the retail level is dominated by big names that offer multiple asset classes in multiple regions – examples include IG Index, Gain Capital, FXCM and MXT/Vantage FX. With size comes greater responsibility and large firms operating in Australia have faced challenges complying with some of the toughest regulatory conditions anywhere in the world. Many firms have balked at setting up operations in Australia due to the associated cost and logistical challenges any foreign firm faces.
Domestic companies such as AxiCorp, GoMarkets, Pepperstone and FXTG are smaller and may not possess the same level of brand recognition as their peers, but they are more able to offer a personalized boutique service which the larger firms struggle to offer due to insufficient staff and resources in comparison to the number of clients they have. Large firms are able to achieve economies of scale and possibly offer better trading conditions as a result, but on the other hand large firms tend to struggle when it comes to making wholesale changes, offering personalized solutions and providing dedicated services such as personalized account management to small clients.