Up to three new alternative equity trading systems are gearing up to launch in the European market, in addition to ventures such as Chi-X, Turquoise and Equiduct, according to a Financial Times report.
Jan Bart de Boer, chairman of the supervisory board European Multilateral Clearing Facility (EMCF) - which was set up last year by Dutch-Belgian banking group Fortis - told FT reporters there are two to three multi-lateral trading facilities (MTF) "waiting in the wings".
The new upstarts are thought to be in talks about the possibility of using EMCF for clearing.
De Boer declined to name the new platforms but told the FT that "there are more of them coming" and the "inflow of new MTFs hasn't stopped".
The Fortis unit already provides clearing to Instinet-subsidiary Chi-X - which was the first MTF to launch in the European market. EMCF has also been selected to provide clearing services for European platforms to be launched by Nasdaq OMX and Bats Trading.
The proliferation of new equities trading platforms set to launch following the introduction of MiFID has raised concerns about overcrowding in the European market.
In addition to recent arrivals in the market - such as Chi-X and the bank-backed Turquoise venture - a raft of new MTFs is set to launch this year, including Burgundy which is being establish by a group of Swedish banks to provide trading in Nordic equities.
The FT report points out that there are around 40 alternative trading platforms in the US, but some platforms went bust amid fierce competition or were acquired by established exchanges.
De Boer said there would likely be a similar situation in Europe - there will be "winners and losers" and "at some point they will be picked up by exchanges".
In a separate move, Swiss Financial Market Services - which was created earlier this year by the merger of SWX Group, Telekurs Group and SIS Group - has unveiled new branding and says it will slash fees in the second half of the year.
The Swiss group - which will now be known as SIX Group - announced the move on the same day that Turquoise introduced Swiss stocks on its recently launched platform.
MTF platforms set to proliferate - Financial Times