FINRA approves Monex Group's bid for TradeStation

On April 21 2011, Japanese Monex Group announced that it submitted a tender offer to acquire TradeStation Securities for about

On April 21 2011, Japanese Monex Group announced that it submitted a tender offer to acquire TradeStation Securities for about $411 million. Acquiring a financial business in most countries requires a regulatory approval and yesterday it was finally given to Monex and TradeStation.

TradeStation only recently decided to enter the retail forex market by itself, as opposed to being Gain’s IB until now, and registered with the CFTC as an RFED. TradeStation at the time of leaving Gain had 4,873 forex accounts with $30.8 million in forex assets.

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Monex Group is a pretty small Japanese broker with estimated $2.5B/monthly FX Volume, 120,192 FX Clients, $240 million income and $55 million profit from fx, stocks and bonds.

Tokyo, Japan and Plantation, Florida, June 6, 2011 – The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) has approved the change in control application concerning TradeStation Group Inc.’s (NASDAQ GS: TRAD) (“TradeStation”) broker-dealer subsidiary, TradeStation Securities, Inc., in connection with the tender offer by Monex Group, Inc.’s (Tokyo Stock Exchange: 8698) (“Monex”) wholly-owned subsidiary in the United States, Felix 2011 Acquisition Sub, Inc. (“Purchaser”), for all outstanding shares of common stock of TradeStation for $9.75 per share, net to the seller in cash, without interest and less any required withholding taxes, and the subsequent merger of Purchaser with and into TradeStation. As a result, the condition of the tender offer related to the approval of FINRA has been satisfied. Monex and TradeStation previously announced satisfaction of the conditions relating to the expiration or termination of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 and the approval of the U.K. Financial Services Authority. Accordingly, all of the regulatory conditions of the tender offer have been satisfied.

The tender offer is currently scheduled to expire at 12:00 midnight, New York City time, on Tuesday, June 7, 2011. If the tender offer is extended, Purchaser and Monex will inform the depositary for the tender offer and will make a public announcement of the extension not later than 9:00 a.m., New York City time, on the next business day after the previously scheduled expiration date.

About Monex Group Inc.

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Monex Group Inc. (Tokyo Stock Exchange 1st section: 8698), including its main subsidiary Monex Inc. (Tokyo, Oki Matsumoto, Chairman and CEO), an online securities brokerage, provides advanced and unique financial services to individual investors. Monex Group has been a pioneer among Japanese online securities brokers since the complete liberalization of commissions and fees in stock brokerages in 1999. Monex relentlessly strives to offer its customers in Japan innovative products and services and has established its reputation as a unique independent financial institution group. Its services cover M&A advisory, debt & equity underwriting, asset management focusing on alternative investments, investment education, and other investment banking functions along with an online distribution network to more than 1.2 million individual investors in Japan.

Monex Group aims to globalize its customer base and businesses in addition to enhancing its global product line and services. Specifically, in recent years, Monex has embarked on an ambitious plan to strengthen its products and services globally by focusing its expansion efforts to date on the growing Chinese market, by opening representative offices in Beijing and acquiring BOOM Securities (HK) Limited and its group companies in Hong Kong. As a core element in the further expansion and global diversification of its businesses, it has been seeking opportunities to expand into the U.S. market, which it saw as the missing pillar in achieving a truly global platform. The acquisition of TradeStation is expected to provide Monex with an immediate expansion and strong commercial presence in the U.S. online brokerage market.

About TradeStation Group, Inc.

TradeStation Group, Inc. (NASDAQ GS: TRAD), through its brokerage subsidiaries, offers the TradeStation platform to the active trader and certain institutional trader markets. TradeStation is an electronic trading platform that offers state-of-the-art electronic order placement and execution and enables clients to scan the markets and design, test, optimize, monitor and automate their own custom Equities, Options, Futures and Forex trading strategies.

TradeStation Securities, Inc. (Member NYSE, FINRA, SIPC, DTCC, OCC & NFA) is a self-clearing, licensed securities broker-dealer and a registered futures commission merchant, and also a member of numerous major exchanges. Its TradeStation Prime Services division, based in New York, seeks to provide prime brokerage services, including securities lending, to small and mid-sized hedge funds and other firms. TradeStation Forex, Inc. (Member NFA) is a Retail Foreign Exchange Dealer (RFED) which offers foreign currency (forex) accounts under what is commonly referred to as the “agency broker model.” The London-based subsidiary, TradeStation Europe Limited, an FSA-authorized brokerage firm, introduces UK and other European accounts to TradeStation Securities and TradeStation Forex. TradeStation’s technology subsidiary, TradeStation Technologies, Inc., develops and offers strategy trading software tools and subscription services and owns TradeStation’s intellectual property.

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