Lori Mirek, chief executive and founder member of independent corporate currency trading portal Currenex, has left the firm. News of her departure comes as bank-backed rival FXall picks up volumes and moves ahead of Currenex for average daily trading values.
Mirek's departure is a blow to Currenex which is struggling to maintain volumes against a competitive surge by FXall. She helped establish the independent multi-bank trading portal among corporates three years ago, in the face of fierce resistance from the banking community. Prior to establishing Currenex, Mirek led the B2B e-commerce division at America Online and was a senior vice president and head of worldwide marketing at Netscape.
Mirek is to be replaced at Currenex by Clifford Lewis, former head of electronic trading and strategy at the Chicago Board of Trade and the guidning light behind the abortive joint venture with German derivatives exchange Eurex. Cuirrenex is not-commenting on the change of personnel, but industry rumours suggest Mirek may have been forced out by ventuer capitalist investors.
The company has just received a final round of financing from TH Lee Putnam Ventures and the Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies and has moved its headquarters to New York City. Jim Brown, managing director, TH Lee Global Internet Managers, says the firm is prepared to fund strategic complementary acquisitions to Currenex in the future.
News of Mirek's unexpected departure leaked just as FXall has reported an uplift in trading volumes, recording its largest ever trading day in December last year with a $9 billion volume spike.
UK research firm ClientKnowledge has since revised upwards its estimate of FXall average daily trading volumes from $3 billion to $4 billion, still some way behind State Street's $9-$10 billion daily FX Connect service, but pulling ahead of Currenex and its estimated $3.5 billion in daily trades.