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This week LeapRate caught up with Gordon McArthur the CEO of Beeks Financial Cloud, as the company looks to continue its impressive growth into 2017. With the trading industry continuing to evolve the firm’s specialty in cloud trading and VPS infrastructures is as important as ever. Recent years has seen tech innovation rapidly improve trading environments not only for institutional traders but also for retailers.
Gordon touched on hot topics such as cryptocurrencies, furthering recent company growth into direct exchange connectivity and expanding more into equities. Like many other industry players, Beeks has experienced explosive growth in the Asia-Pacific region. The company looks to build upon this growth, as they recently made big investments in the launch of its financial cloud in Hong Kong with real-time network connectivity into mainland China.
Read all about this and more in the Q & A below:
LeapRate: Can you tell us about your background in the financial trading industry?
Gordon: My background in retail trading started in 2005 when I was part of a team that traded S&P futures in a small prop shop environment. Similar to many entrepreneurs, my start in trading was a part-time thing, as my day job was with IBM, and I worked on commercial software solutions for large corporate clients.
BeeksFX was founded in 2011, after six years of building a homegrown infrastructure to support our trading group. From BeeksFX, Beeks Financial Cloud was born to help support low-latency cloud infrastructure for institutional clients across forex, futures and equities.
LeapRate: How did Beeks get started, and what gave you the motivation to found and run the company?
Gordon: Beeks got its start out of our dissatisfaction with the industry having little-to-no affordable, low-latency infrastructure for retail traders. That dissatisfaction, coupled with my technology background, made it a logical next step to build a company that made FX trading accessible to retail traders of all sizes.
LeapRate: Can you talk about the Gallant VPS merger deal back in 2014?
Gordon: The Gallant VPS deal was an important deal for us in 2014. While it would be considered very small by today’s standards of M&A transactions in financial services, it gave us the experience we needed of completing a transaction and establishing a presence in the United States. The transaction was a great experience for us, both commercially and operationally.
LeapRate: What is your view on the retail forex brokerage industry?
Gordon: Beeks Financial Cloud deals with retail brokers in various ways. We are a VPS provider, and we’re providing more hosting and connectivity services. The way I see it, retail brokerages can unfairly get a bad reputation, and there are some unscrupulous brokers out there. However, in general, we work with organizations that invest heavily in providing a great trading experience for their clients. We work with brokers of all sizes, and have great, longstanding relationships with many of the biggest names in the industry.
LeapRate: Should all traders get on VPS or is this only for sophisticated quant and algo traders?
Gordon: For any auto execution, a VPS or Dedicated Server is essential.
LeapRate: How is Beeks branching outside of its FX specialization into other asset classes?
Gordon: Beeks Financial Cloud purchased VDIWare in 2015, providing us with a deep presence in futures connectivity in Chicago. That acquisition has given us the opportunity to be a CME Service Provider with direct connectivity to the exchange.
We are looking to build upon that footprint organically through acquisition and move further into the equities space when the right opportunity presents itself. We now connect to over 100 venues globally, and we have eight data centers with dedicated low-latency bandwidth between sites.
LeapRate: What is your view on cryptocurrencies? How would they fit into the financial cloud, is it still too early to tell?
Gordon: We see them as another instrument to trade. In fact, we have many clients using our cloud that are already trading cryptocurrencies.
LeapRate: How is business different across regions, say comparing Japan to the United States or Europe?
Gordon: Asia is a major focus for us. We’re helping our institutional clients target Asia, and our Asian client base is growing rapidly. The Western countries that have historically been the major players continue to remain steady — however, Beeks is seeing the most explosive growth in Asia.
The recent launch of our cloud in Hong Kong with real-time network connectivity into mainland China was a massive investment and something our clients are seeking to exploit almost immediately.
LeapRate: What does 2017 have in store for the company?
Gordon: We hope that 2017 will be a landmark year for the company. We continue to grow, and we’re heavily investing in our cloud platform to provide our clients with more locations and exchanges to connect to.
Our global team consists of 35 employees, and we will see that surpass 50 in 2017. The plan for 2017 is more of the same; continue to grow, help our clients trade in markets across the globe and build innovative solutions that make a positive impact on the trading industry.