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Screenshot of a breaking news alert e-mail from Q2 2017
LeapRate is pleased to speak today with incoming Head of Retail at XTB Online Trading Joshua Raymond. As was exclusively reported last week on LeapRate, Joshua Raymond just joined XTB after a decade at City Index, most recently as City Index’s Marketing Director.
1) Hi Joshua. Our audience would love to hear more about your decision to join XTB. How did you come to join the company?
Having been at City Index for close to a decade, I have huge respect for the company – both for the people it has and for giving me a platform to grow professionally. But 10 years is a long time and I felt that the acquisition by Gain Capital was a natural point for me to seek a new challenge.
The opportunity at XTB Limited really excites me and having met with Jakub Zablocki, the founder of XTB, his vision for the company and passion for giving retail clients an exceptional trading experience convinced me that I am at the right place to take the next step in my career.
2) It seems as though there are a number of both domestic and foreign brokers which are gearing up to ‘take UK market share’. And of course there’s IG, the long-time market leader. How will XTB differentiate itself and compete for the attention of UK traders?
Make no mistake, the UK market is hugely competitive. The last few years has seen a deluge of foreign brokers make inroads into the UK market who are domiciled in exotic overseas markets and escape the full and strict regulatory oversight that comes with being authorised and regulated by the FCA. That remains an ongoing challenge as they don’t necessarily abide by the same rules, such as client appropriateness, and there are other knock-on effects of course such as inflating marketing costs and clouding the market from a proposition perspective.
But rather like the banking industry changing dramatically over the past few years thanks to various scandals and poor practices, the SNB fallout and the collapse of several brokers over recent years such as Alpari, and the regulatory scrutiny faced by Plus 500, has forced the average retail trader to wise up. Being authorised by a regulator with one of the best reputations worldwide is a tactical advantage as it gives clients confidence that they are trading with a broker who has to uphold the highest of regulatory standards.
We also believe that right now, most providers are moving more to a low-touch model, where customers are left to take care of themselves and have to find everything out alone. That’s fine if they are buying a Mac or item of clothing, but when you are dealing in leveraged trading products, we believe you have a much higher duty of care to the customer than leaving them to fend for themselves. So as most brokers move to this low-touch model, we’re doing the exact opposite. We want to nurture our clients along their trading journey because our business model works best when clients trade with us over the long-term. As such, everything we do is geared towards giving them an exceptional experience, developing their skills and helping them to achieve their trading ambition. An example of this is our XTB Trading Club, where a community of XTB clients meet at our London HQ every Thursday evening to talk about trading, share their experiences and receive personalised education from our analysts.
This proposition is already gaining strong traction with our clients, evidenced by the fact we have tripled our trading volume in the past six months. I am confident that we can continue to grow market share here in the UK and in other international markets.
3) Outside the UK where do you see the most opportunity for growth?
There are certainly lots of markets out there – Latin America for example – where we feel our proposition can gain traction. We are already on-boarding customers to XTB Limited from a variety of countries outside of the UK via our FCA offering and we expect that to continue. The focus for us right now however is in the UK.
4) What do you see as the key challenges in your new role?
I am responsible from growing the retail business and naturally there are a few hurdles. One of the key challenges we face is to make our on-boarding process as efficient and rigorous as possible, which is more of a technical challenge. Equally, as a brand that has little awareness in the UK – a market that is traditionally very expensive to advertise in press or outdoor – we have to be highly efficient from a digital marketing perspective and make sure we are engaging our target customers in a timely, relevant and cost-effective manner.