The London Stock Exchange has hired John Wilson, a former Lehman Brothers executive, as CEO of Baikal, its proposed pan-European dark pool.
Wilson spent almost seven years at Lehman Brothers where he was on the executive committees for both equities and fixed income and served as head of equity and fixed income research. He left the firm in May 2007 to found Expert Analysis Group, a financial consulting firm.
Wilson is currently evaluating the new range of options for implementing Baikal. The dark pool’s future was cast into doubt when Lehman Brothers, the LSE’s partner in the venture, filed for bankruptcy on 15 September.
But the LSE reaffirmed its commitment to setting up the pool. Following the break-up and acquisition of Lehman’s businesses by Barclays Capital and Nomura, the exchange said it has received and is exploring a number of alternative proposals for delivering Baikal. It added that it hopes to be in a position to say more about these revised plans in the next few weeks.
“With over twenty years’ experience in investment banking, I feel sure that [Wilson] will justify the strong positive response we have had to Baikal particularly from major buy-side institutions,” said Clara Furse, chief executive of the LSE and chairman of Baikal, in a statement.
Wilson added, “The desire of investors to access deeper pools of liquidity through a neutral venue is greater than ever and Baikal, as an exchange-led solution, will meet this need in a unique and differentiated way.”
Baikal, which will be registered as a multilateral trading facility (MTF), will combine algorithms and smart order routing with a non-displayed liquidity pool.
Before joining Lehman, Wilson served on the Equity Executive Committee for Japan and as Head of Japan and UK research at UBS. He has also worked in the oil and management consulting industries.