ION

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ION
Logo ion trading.gif
Founded 1999
Headquarters Dublin, Ireland
Key People Andrea Pignataro, Chief Executive Officer
Employees 1000+
Products Automation software for financial institutions, central banks and corporations
Website iongroup.com

ION Trading is a privately held, global financial software firm that provides technology for trading and execution, risk management and position calculation, connectivity to exchanges and markets, and solutions for middle and back office processes. The firm offers trading solutions across most asset classes and works with trading and brokerage firms, multi-national corporations, governments and central banks.[1] [2][3][4]

Headquartered in Dublin, the company has offices in London, New York, Tokyo, Frankfurt, Madrid, Toronto, Chicago, Singapore, Sydney, Berlin, Delhi, Pisa, Italy, India and Australia. It is one of the largest financial software firms in the world with technology that covers everything from trade execution through the settlement process with clearing member firms on derivatives, forex, OTC and fixed income markets.[5]


History

CEO Andrea Pignataro founded ION in 1999. The company is backed by several large stakeholders. Its parent company is known as Ion Investment Group, or IIG.

ION was backed by TA Associates, an investment company that bought 30 percent of the company for €35 million ($44 million) in 2004. In May 2016, IIG completed a recapitalization plan and TA Associates sold off its investment in the company. Meanwhile, Carlyle Group made a $400 million investment in ION Investment Group in May 2016, taking a minority stake. At the time, Carlyle revealed that ION had more than $300 million in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, which is a measure of a company's operating performance. Two of Carlyle's executives, Renee James and Cam Dyer joined ION's board of directors.[6] [7] [8][9][10]

Acquisitions

ION has grown steadily in size through a series of acquisitions, including those listed below:

ION purchased back-office software firm Rolfe & Nolan in July 2008, giving the firm real-time back office technologies as well as hosting and facilities management.[11]

In July 2011, ION completed the purchase of Wall Street Systems, a vendor in the forex and short-term interest rate markets. The deal provided ION with features such as deal capture and post-trade functionality, including debt management for high-end companies and central banks, as well as treasury solutions for smaller corporations.[12][13][14]

ION acquired Patsystems in February 2012 in a £29 million ($32 million) transaction.[15]

In January 2013, ION acquired Financial Software Systems, a U.S. based firm which serves banks, broker-dealers and fund managers around the world. [16] [17]

In February 2013, ION announced the acquisition of FFastFill, a designer and developer of front-, middle- and back-office services to the global electronic trading community, for $165 million. Before the tender offer, ION had already held a 25.1 percent stake in FFastFill. [18]

In July 2013, ION acquired Triple Point Technology, a U.S. software company which enables its customers to manage the price volatility of raw materials and commodities. The deal was closed for approximately $900 million in cash. ION operates Triple Point as a stand-alone business and maintains its headquarters in Westport, Connecticut.[19]

ION has made other acquisitions including Iris Trading Systems, an Irish bond market trading system.

It acquired Caplin Systems, a single-dealer portal platform, in 2015 for an undisclosed amount.[20]

In October 2016, the firm acquired Reval, a cloud-based firm focused on treasury and risk management sectors. The firm aimed to help clients manage cash, liquidity and financial risk, as well as manage complex financial instruments and hedging activities.[21]

Products and Services

  • Trading
  • Pricing
  • Position Keeping and Risk Management
  • Technology

ION offers Multi-Market Interface, an interface that allows traders to operate in multiple dealer-to-dealer and dealer-to-customer electronic markets.

The company’s Multi-Market Interface also supports automated tools, such as The Auto-Hedger, a tool that submits hedges to a specified market on receipt of a trade notification from any cash or derivatives market; The Multi-Market Spread Trading Tool, which allows traders to create strategies that trade with risk management profiles; and Market-Making tools to manage market pricing obligations. [22]

The firm also features a multi-market desktop application called ION.NET, which allows traders to connect in dealer-to-dealer and dealer-to-customer markets.

ION pricing solutions support global trading desks operating around-the-clock in fixed income and foreign exchange markets. They enable pricing of thousands of securities sub-types for government, emerging markets, high-grade, high-yield and money market bonds; calculate real-time prices for FX spot, forwards, NDFs and swaps; and price associated futures and options.[23]

ION multi-asset fixed income and foreign exchange portal for salespeople and their end-customers offers real-time pricing, trade execution and customer trade analytics.

ION trade execution solutions enable trading of listed derivatives and equities on more than 100 venues worldwide, 24 hours per day.

Starting in 2015, ION began rolling out its XTP clearing solution, a near real-time system, an upgrade to its Rolfe & Nolan system. It took ION four years to build the system, creating it on top of ION’s core trading technology. The system is fully integrated with ION's front- and middle-office technology.[24] XTP runs continuously and can process large trade volumes at high STP rates.[25]

ION's Anvil supports repo and securities lending businesses by automating front and middle-office activities. Anvil provides access to all repo interdealer broker markets and to new securities finance markets.

Key People

References

  1. Talking Intelligent Trading with Andrew Delaney: A Glimpse into the Mysterious World of ION Trading. Intelligent Trading Technology.
  2. Financial Institutions. ION.
  3. Governments. ION.
  4. Corporations. ION.
  5. Contact. ION.
  6. The Carlyle Group Makes Minority Investment in ION. The Carlyle Group.
  7. Welsh, Carson, Expected to Fundraise Later this Year, Finds Buyer for Triple Point. PE Hub.
  8. TA Associates puts ION Trading stake up for sale: UPDATED. Buyouts.
  9. Andrew Delaney: A Glimpse into the Mysterious World of ION Trading. IntelligentTradingTechnology.
  10. ION Investment Group (IIG) is a holding company formed to acquire and consolidate financial technology companiesorg=TA Associates. {{{org}}}.
  11. Rolfe & Nolan Quiet On Takeover Reports For £50m. Futures & Options Intelligence.
  12. ION Trading Acquires WallStreet Systems: It’s Only the Beginning. Aite.
  13. wall street sign Ion Trading to acquire Wall Street Systems. FX Week.
  14. Wall Street Systems acquisition by ION Trading completes. Wall Street Systems press release.
  15. Patsystems gets approach from Ion Trading. Financial Times.
  16. ION buys Financial Software Systems. Finextra.
  17. Press Release. Financial software system.
  18. ION Group agrees FFastFill acquisition. FinExtra.
  19. Westport’s Triple Point Technology Sold for $900M. Westport Now.
  20. Talking Intelligent Trading with Andrew Delaney: A Glimpse into the Mysterious World of ION Trading. Intelligent Trading Technology.
  21. ION Enters Definitive Agreement to Acquire Reval. Press Release.
  22. ION Trading. LinkedIn.
  23. ION for financial institutions. ION.
  24. A Difference Maker: Post-trade Clearing Tech Now a Differentiator For Firms. John Lothian News.
  25. ION for Financial Institutions. ION Trading.