Source: IFX Group
IFX has agreed to acquire the entire issued share capital of Commerce from Commerce Bank & Trust Company for $1.9 million (£1.0 million) in cash from existing resources.
Commerce, which operates over the internet through its website, is a margin foreign exchange trading business with a strong US and international distribution capability, an expanding retail customer base of over 1,200 accounts and client funds placed with it of over $9.2 million (£5.0 million). The business was founded in 2002 and employs 15 staff based in Boston, Massachusetts. It is currently profitable and will have net assets at acquisition of $0.6 million.
It is anticipated that the acquisition will be earnings enhancing from completion.
With this acquisition, IFX achieves a major step forward in developing its US presence, and also adds to its wider international customer network. The retail customer base of Commerce in foreign exchange adds materially to IFX's own existing retail business, and complements its more institutional client focus.
IFX's scaleable operating platform and product range will support the sales and distribution capability of Commerce and, on integration, will provide synergies in marketing and operations.
Paul Belogour, founder and Managing Director of Commerce, will report to James Thornton, IFX's recently appointed Head of Foreign Exchange. This acquisition is the outcome of the strategic review of foreign exchange at IFX and consequent product developments led by Mr. Thornton in recent months.
The acquisition is conditional on receiving final regulatory approvals and is expected to complete before 31 December 2004. It will be undertaken through IFX Markets Inc, the US Futures Commission Merchant, regulated by the CFTC and a member of the National Futures Authority, which commenced trading in January 2004.
Edmond Warner, CEO of IFX, said: "The acquisition of Commerce is a significant step forward for IFX's existing foreign exchange business. It brings excellent people, with a strong sales culture and a wide customer base, and delivers improved access to the US and international retail markets, the fastest growing sector of the FX world. It is an important step in our development as a specialist financial services group, with the delivery of our products and internet trading platforms to a wider audience."
Paul Belogour, Managing Director of Commerce, commented: "We are delighted that we have found the right partner in IFX. Their expertise and product range will significantly improve the offering to our clients and enable us to grow our business to a far greater degree. This transaction offers much to our people and customers alike."