Gibraltar based brokerage firm Investors Europe announced Friday the launch of its new retail-focused Forex business. Investors Europe has been around for nearly a decade doing mainly high-net-worth and institutional brokerage, billing itself as “Europe’s largest independently owned offshore stockbroker” (hard to argue with that, with all those qualifiers!).
Some details of the launch include:
- ECN model.
- minimum $2,000 initial deposit to open an ECN/STP account.
- MT4 or Currenex trading platform, as well as mobile.
- offering 80 currency pairs, plus CFDs on major equity indices (FTSE, CAC40, DAX30, DJ, S&P500), plus crude oil, gold and silver.
- advertising up to 400:1 leverage.
- MiFID compliant – Gibraltar is an EU member, and Investors Europe is regulated as an Investment Dealer by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) in Gibraltar.
- initial languages (website) – English and Spanish.
It will be interesting to see how the launch goes, how much they invest in marketing, and whether or not Investors Europe – which is clearly focusing initially on the English and Spanish language European market – gets any traction in terms of volume and/or client assets. The announcement reminded us somewhat of the launch of LMAX (spinoff of Betfair, also backed by Goldman Sachs) late last year. Things have not gone smoothly there, with many (if not most) of the original management gone less than half a year after launch, including the departure of ex-CEO Robin Osmond. At the same time, the market in Europe (especially in the UK) has gotten more crowded, with US-based firms such as Oanda and MB Trading recently going through FSA regulation looking to expand outside the US, as well as Far East firms such as Hong Kong based Hantec Group recently making moves into the UK.