Aquis Exchange says its first year of operation has seen it successfully gain strong liquidity in key markets and stocks, though it hopes key developments in 2015 will help it build a stronger market share.
The exchange was launched a year ago by Alasdair Haynes, former CEO of Chi-X Europe and ITG Europe, with the aim of shaking up the existing exchange pricing model by introducing a subscription-based services modeled on the telecoms industry.
Haynes said, “I am pleased to report that after a very successful launch late last year, Aquis Exchange has continued to grow during 2014 and new data shows that anyone wanting to execute in size at the touch and fulfill their best execution obligations should be coming direct to us.”
The exchange has highlighted data from independent transaction cost analysis provider LiquidMetrix which shows it achieving strong book depth and spreads in some key stocks.
For example, during October Aquis had the second best spreads and book depth in Intesa Sanpaolo, with only the listing exchange performing better. It has also achieved good book depth in other key stocks such as Rolls-Royce and Volvo, according to LiquidMetrix figures.
However, Haynes was critical of the way electronic trading tools route orders.
“We’re continuing to focus on building liquidity in key names,” Haynes told theTRADEnews.com, “but if the market share isn’t coming then it’s because smart order routers aren’t looking at the high level of liquidity we have, which strikes me as not being very smart.”
He said too often order routing technology is relying on historical trading data, which means it often fails to spot good trading opportunities on smaller and less established venues.
For the year ahead, Aquis is aiming to sign up the four major investment banks it does not already have on-board. Once they have become members Aquis will shift its focus onto bringing in smaller brokers and second tier banks which it believes will benefit the most from its subscription model, but which will want to see liquidity supported by major institutions before joining.
The exchange is also set to announce new products at the beginning of next year.