CMC Connect at iFX EXPO International 2023: Richard Elston on going beyond CFDs

Rick Steves

Richard Elston spoke about the recent integration with FX CRM platform Skale, the upcoming launch of cash equities, and the introduction of futures and options in November.

FinanceFeeds Interviews

Once again, FinanceFeeds was present at the iFX EXPO International 2023 in Limassol, Cyprus, to cover one of the most prestigious events within the FX industry, this time with over 4,000 fintech professionals in attendance.

The iFX EXPO 2023 was a hotbed of discussions and announcements, one of the most significant of which came from Richard Elston, Group Head of Institutional at CMC Connect.

Why CMC Connect chose Skale’s CRM for FX brokers

CMC Connect has been pushing the boundaries in technology, as it seeks to provide comprehensive solutions for financial technology enthusiasts. “We have a robust white-label platform,” said Elston, adding that the integration of the CRM and FX broker client portal from Skale was more about “providing a service which compliments our white label offering.”

What’s more interesting is the philosophy behind CMC’s selection process. Elston revealed that Skale was chosen after reviewing various providers and aligning with a “particular launch customer.” The choice was also influenced by an effort to answer to the “entire family” of financial participants that CMC Markets service.

Going beyond CFDs: cash equities, futures, options, fixed income

Notably, CMC Connect plans to diversify its offerings further by rolling out a cash equities product suite. “We’ve been speaking about derivative asset classes. This industry has thrived on it for years”, he said, while noting that there are a number of rationales and strategies that justify proper securitized assets and, beyond that, “we see our customers demanding this”.

“We’ve seen even in this traditional brokerage world that there has been a leak, maybe first to single stock CFDs and then that subsequent demand for actual cash equities as well. But I don’t think it stops at cash equities”, Elston continued.

Expanding on the scope of these plans, Elston mentioned the launch of futures and options around November, along with a synthetic options offering, while having plans to introduce fixed income later this year. “If you’re interested in being in asset management, facing private banks, operating with family offices, you need to have these kinds of asset classes beyond the mere CFD,” he said.

Another significant strategic move is the partnership with Lucera, as part of CMC’s ambition to make a dent in the wholesale non-bank FX market making business. Elston noted that while they provide FX as a CFD, Lucera allows them to tap into a broader spectrum of client types within the FX world.

Why CMC Connect is different

Addressing the evolving regulatory landscape and increasing competition in the institutional FX space, Elston distinguished CMC from Prime of Prime providers, saying that they’re a non-bank liquidity provider. “We create our own price,” he clarified.

As for emerging trends like de-dollarization and its potential impact on the FX industry, Elston acknowledged that while they’re not heavily involved in emerging markets yet, it’s part of their future strategy. He sees demand for non-deliverable forwards and plans to be more involved in that space.

It seems that CMC Connect is poised to continue its journey in pushing the envelope in the financial industry, whether it’s through technological integration, diversification of asset classes, or strategic partnerships.

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