Chi-X boss covets top slot among bourses

Pan-European share trading platform Chi-X Europe, Europe’s third-biggest trading platform after just three years in business, has broken into profit and aims to become Europe’s number one exchange, its new chief executive said.

Chi-X has become profitable on a daily basis this year, making it the first European multilateral trading facility (MTF) to do so, Alasdair Haynes said. The upstart challenger to Europe’s stock exchanges has grown to rank third in trading volume after NYSE Euronext and the London Stock Exchange, and its increased clout has led consultants and others to speculate it could boost fees.

Haynes, who took over in January, is now drafting a plan for the next three years.

“My ambition is to cement where we are today with our liquidity and then continue to build that market share. I see absolutely no reason why we cannot continue that growth and become the number. one European exchange,” he said.

Chi-X Europe launched on 30 March 2007 to be the first in a string of new MTFs to take advantage of the opening of competition by the European Commission’s markets in financial instruments directive (MiFID).

Ownership of the group is divided between 19 major dealer clients and Nomura’s Instinet, which owns 34 per cent and holds two of the nine board seats.

MTFs have won market share from London Stock Exchange, Deutsche Borse and others by undercutting them on price.