Today we are speaking with Ian McAfee, co-founder and CEO of FX consulting firm Shift Forex. Shift was started in 2009. Its founders came from retail FX broker FXCM and blue-chip management consultancy Ernst & Young Advisory.
The firm made a name for itself providing strategy consulting services to a broad cross-section of the global FX brokerage industry as well as the technology firms and liquidity providers that serve it. Shift now operates from offices in New York, London and Auckland.
In 2014, Shift has been involved with notable FX initiatives by financial services heavyweights NASDAQ OMX and Citadel Securities, a unit of the massive Chicago-based hedge fund.
LeapRate: Hi Ian, Thanks for joining us today. Can you tell us a little about the upcoming FXIC event?
Shift Forex: Sure, FXIC takes place June 19th and 20th at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in midtown Manhattan.
Like other events in the global FXIC series it focuses on the foreign exchange industry. We have very strong panels on important market structure, regulatory and growth opportunities provided by some of the smartest people we know in the business.
Also, it’s a busy day for the World Cup, so we have some fun “futbol” themed activities going on as well as plenty of networking opportunities.
LeapRate: How has the response been to the event?
Shift Forex: We have over 400 registered as of today from brokers, fund managers, banks, technology vendors, liquidity and service providers, which is well ahead of last year’s level. The pace of registrations is picking up as we get closer to the event. Naturally, most attendees of the New York event are from the U.S., but we have a lot of people flying in from Europe, South America and Asia for it too.
Importantly, we’ve also gotten very strong sponsor participation from NASDAQ OMX, Forex Factory, Citadel Securities, Advanced Markets, Citi, Berkshire Capital, oneZero and others, as well as great media partners including LeapRate.
LeapRate: Can you tell us what sets apart FXIC from other industry events?
Shift Forex: Sure. In our consulting work we’ve seen great ideas and innovation across the spectrum from the smallest start ups to the largest financial market companies. The FXIC event series reflects our world view in that it brings together people from the retail, wholesale and institutional market segments on both the buy and sell-side.
Also, we do everything we can to make FXIC events melting pots for all FX market and industry participants. We keep ticket prices low. To optimize networking at the event we try to arrange meetings between attendees. We do this mostly for sponsors, but we make an effort to do this for anyone involved in the event.
LeapRate: Speaking of Shift’s global FXIC events, where else can we expect future conferences?
Shift Forex: We are planning to hold FXICs in South or Central America as well as one or two key markets in the Asia Pacific. As you might remember, last year we held an event in Santiago, which brought together FX industry participants from South America as well as the US and Europe. The attendees and sponsors of that event are keen to have us reprise it somewhere in the region.
We expect to formally announce these upcoming FXIC events in the next few weeks, so stay tuned.
LeapRate: That’s exciting. Any final thoughts?
Shift Forex: Thanks very much for the opportunity to discuss this year’s FXIC NYC event. Anyone who wants more information can visit the event Web site www.fxic.com. We hope to see you there.