Global electronic market maker Optiver has promoted Paul Hilgers to CEO from his previous position as head of the firm’s Asia-Pacific business, effective yesterday.
Hilgers, who joined the Amsterdam-headquartered firm in 2006, replaces Johann Kaemingk, who will remain a member of Optiver’s management board, alongside Hilgers and CFO Edwin Duijn.
Prior to joining Optiver Asia-Pacific as head of market structure, Hilgers was commercial director for Fortis Clearing Asia-Pacific, having started his career as a market maker for Amsterdam Options Traders.
Hilgers, who will relocate from Sydney to Amsterdam by the summer, will take over responsibilities for market structure, global clearing and communication from Jelle Etzinga, whose departure as global head of market structure and management board member was announced last year.
Luke McElnea, currently head of IT at Optiver Asia-Pacific, will replace Hilgers as CEO of the unit.
As CEO of Optiver Asia-Pacific, Hilgers was critical of the impact on derivatives trading of proposed reforms by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) designed to curb high-frequency trading. In particular, he argued that a proposal to introduce minimum resting periods for all orders below three futures contracts.
“I don’t see a good reason to introduce those resting times. On the whole ASIC’s proposals have been good for the market, but there are a few details it could reconsider,” Hilgers told The TRADE Asia in June last year.
Optiver made a net profit in 2012 of €141.6 million, having posted a €159.9 million profit in 2011. The firm attributed a 24% decline in net trading income to €370.1 million in 2012 to lower volumes and volatility on major exchanges.
Optiver trades on all major European derivatives and equities exchanges, and is active in the derivatives markets of Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Japan and the US.