Cypriot broker Markets.com, part of the SafeCap line of brands has launched TopOption, a new binary options trading unit. powered by SpotOption’s platform. Unlike several other forex broker backed binary options that hide their parent brand, TopOption clearly marks that it is ‘Powered by Markets.com’.
While the move isn’t surprising and it was rumored for a while that Markets.com/SafeCap was entering the binary options arena, it is another sign that the retail forex market is maturing. As overall trading volumes have tapered off in 2012, brokers have been looking elsewhere to launch new trading products. This had initially included the expansion of CFD offerings and launching of exotic forex pairs, but has recently led to the start of entirely new binary options units. Other than a few brokers that have implemented binary options trading within their forex platforms, the norm has been to simply create a separate brand for the product. When launching a binary options brand, the important decision for brokers to answer is how will the two products exist together and whether there will be cross cannibalization?
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Discussing this topic on whether to launch a new binary brand as a separate unit or within a broker’s larger offering , Bart Burggraaf, Partner at Media Group London, whose firm provides marketing services to both forex and binary firms, said “For FX or multi-asset brokers that operate a BO unit, they tend to not promote it too heavily and any moves we have seen for promotion have not been very convincing. To reduce risk, I think some brokerages could launch a new brand first, when they see it’s working they can always rebrand it to their main brand. Other brokerages have just integrated it into their multi-asset platform, and I do not see any dedicated marketing for that other than a launch campaign.” On this account, it seems that Markets.com is taking a middle of the road approach by launching TopOption as a separate unit but putting their name and regulatory status behind the new venture.