Euronext, a wholly owned subsidiary of IntercontinentalExchange Group (NYSE: ICE), today announced that starting on 3 March 2014, APG, the largest pension fund Asset Manager in the Netherlands, is the first Dutch institutional investor to operate as an intermediated participant on BondMatch.
APG has selected KBL European Private Bankers (KBL epb), one of Europe's leading private banking groups, to serve as its market-member intermediary for order execution.
With assets of nearly €344 billion, APG manages pension assets that together represent over 30% of total collective pensions in the Netherlands. It does so on behalf of the country's main pension funds, serving more than 4.5 million beneficiaries. APG's intermediated participant status allows it to view the central orderbook; transfer its asset flows to KBL epb, a direct market-member of BondMatch; be represented anonymously in pre- and post-trade data; and receive daily statistics on its orders and executed trades. A key financial player on international markets, APG will support BondMatch's development and help encourage greater participation among European users of the system.
Launched in 2011, BondMatch allows professional investors to trade euro-denominated corporate, financial and property bonds through a transparent orderbook that accepts only firm orders. It currently includes over 2,000 securities from over 500 different European issuers. Around 20% of these bonds are listed on one of Euronext's regulated bond markets, mainly in France and the Netherlands. With 280 bonds issued by Dutch entities representing nearly 15% of securities available on BondMatch, the Netherlands is a strategic market with assets under management totalling over €400 billion.
"APG's readiness as an intermediated participant is excellent news for BondMatch. It demonstrates the appeal of our platform as well as the effectiveness of our model in getting buy-side companies more closely involved," said Nathalie Masset, head of debt markets at Euronext. "I would like to thank KBL epb, which, since the BondMatch launch, has adapted its services to facilitate institutional investors' connection with the system, and, by contributing to our discussions and consultations, has helped enhance our value proposition. Taking into account APG, KBL epb is now serving as intermediary for no fewer than four buy-side companies based in France and in Benelux."
In 2014, BondMatch continued to innovate and offer new functions to platform users, including recent developments such as its "request for auction" service for large orders that concentrates liquidity at two defined points in the trading day, and, via Bloomberg, automated daily alerts that keep investors up to date in real time with trading opportunities on the BondMatch orderbook.
Thijs Aaten, Managing Director Treasury & Trading, APG, added: "The current regulatory environment where trading and finding liquidity in fixed income instruments is increasingly difficult, makes us look for innovative alternatives. We think the BondMatch platform is such an alternative, because it offers a new market infrastructure that allows trading with a broad set of investors."
Jonathan Grosvenor, General Manager, Global Financial Markets, KBL epb, noted: "As a provider of unrivalled market access and reliable pricing to both individual and institutional clients, KBL epb's Global Financial Markets department is very pleased to provide execution services that support APG's ambitions, while also contributing to the geographic diversification of the BondMatch platform. We look forward to continuing to work with APG - and with Euronext - to help drive increased value and volumes on BondMatch."