Bats Europe sweeps the board at FN trading awards

Bats Europe took home six awards in total, including Exchange Group of the Year for the second year in a row, as well as Best Equities Trading Platform and Most Innovative Data Product/Service for Bats Indices, the new set of benchmarks it launched in June 2016.

Its chief operating officer, David Howson, won the Chief Technology/Chief Operating Officer of the Year Award, while Hotspot, the currency spot trading platform it acquired in January 2015, won the award for Best FX Trading Platform.

Bats rounded things off with a joint award for Most Innovative Trading Product/Service, which was shared with Aquis Exchange.

Its success reflects an ability to stay true to its challenger ethos despite becoming Europe’s largest equity market, launching innovative services, diversifying into other asset classes and keeping longer established rivals on their toes in the past year.

One judge, who awarded the company top marks, said: “If you’re looking at exchange groups that are preparing themselves for the future, few have done more than Bats. Whether that is its new auctions book, the expansion of Hotspot, trade reporting or indices – they are all bold statements.”

The winners – unveiled at a gala event – were spread more widely among nominees this year, with other standout victors including Michael Spencer, group chief executive of Icap, who was honoured for a decade of excellence.

Spencer, who is set to lead a specialist electronic and post-trade provider called Nex Group following the sale of Icap’s voice business to rival Tullet Prebon, held off a strong challenge from the second-placed David Lester, chief strategy officer at the London Stock Exchange Group.

Another individual honour – the Editor’s Choice Award – went to David Tait, who stepped down as head of Credit Suisse’s global markets business earlier this year. He has climbed Mount Everest five times to campaign for victims of sexual abuse.

Elsewhere, UBS picked up two awards on the nigh, for European Equities House of the Year and Sellside Electronic Execution Department of the Year.

XTX Markets, the electronic market-maker co-headed by Deutsche Bank veteran Zar Amrolia, was the inaugural winner of Specialist Liquidity Provider of Year. This category was created to reflect the growing importance of non-bank firms in markets traditionally dominated by dealers, such as FX and fixed income.

Behavox, which uses behavioural analysis mechanisms to detect signs of misconduct among traders in real-time, was named Capital Markets Start-Up of the Year.

For the second year in a row, Bank of America Merrill Lynch was named Best Firm for Market Structure and Execution Consulting, an area taking on increased importance as banks and buyside firms seek to navigate the increasingly complex trading and regulatory landscape.

JP Morgan was named the European FICC House of the Year for the third year in a row, while EuroCCP dethroned ICE Clear Europe as Clearing House of the Year.

Other winners included Bloomberg for Best Fixed Income Trading Platform, Deutsche Börse’s Eurex for Best Derivatives Trading Platform and Cinnober’s TRADExpress Realtime Clearing technology in the Post-Trade Initiative of the Year category.

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