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Cognotec Expands Following $20 Million Softbank Investment

Cognotec is expanding its presence globally with a number of senior appointments and several new offices. Albert Maasland is joining the group this month as global head of marketing from Deutsche Bank, where he was most recently global head of marketing for the investment bank worldwide. Meanwhile, the e-commerce trading systems provider has opened offices in Singapore, Switzerland, Amsterdam and San Francisco.

“There is a certain logic to my move,” says Maasland. “I love the FX industry and Cognotec has the perfect enablement technology to allow banks of all sizes to harness Internet trading. It helps the industry move into e-commerce in a very straightforward way. Cognotec is already the dominant player in the field at a point in which Web trading is just taking off. As an example, Deutsche Bank just became the first bank to offer Internet FX trading in Japan, which they’ve done off the Cognotec ASP backbone.”

In other appointments, Roland White has joined as the new regional manager for the UK and Ireland. White spent the past nine years with EBS, last as senior relationship manager concentrating on London-based clients.

Fred Kahn becomes Cognotec’s new business development manager for France, based in the recently opened Paris office. Kahn spent four years with software development house Diagram, where he was manager for the international banking operations division. Prior to Diagram, he spent seven years with Banque Indosuez in Paris, where he was chief dealer.

David Sellars joins as an account manager, after spending the past eight years as both business development manager and account manager at Reuters.

In Asia, the new appointees to Cognotec’s team will work on local sales and implementation of Cognotec’s AutoDeal LITE Internet-based FX and money market trading service.

Timothy Neo will head the new Singapore office as managing director, Asia Sub Region, focusing on managing relationships with the local banking community. Neo spent the past 12 years with Reuters, last as sales manager, new business.

Vi-na Yu joins the Singapore office as an account manager. She previously held a similar position at ECS Computers, Asia. Her responsibilities include both sales to new accounts and for support to AutoDeal LITE customers once they have gone live.

Meanwhile, Denis Sweeney joins the Tokyo office, responsible for operations and technology, focusing on implementations in Asia. Patrick Dunne, who was formerly project manager for the deployment of FX systems in Japan, will also take responsibility for operations and technology in Tokyo.

“These new appointments show our cutting edge trading services attract the cream of the industry talent, each of whom is keen to contribute to Cognotec’s continued success. This fact, coupled with our expansion on the European continent, shows that the operational efficiencies offered by Internet-based trading systems is proving as irresistible to the considerable number of talented individuals working in this sector as it is to the banking community world-wide. I am delighted to have these individuals as part of the team,” says Steve Butcher, managing director for Europe.

David Jones, Cognotec’s managing director for the Asian region, adds: “The quality of our new appointees demonstrates Cognotec’s commitment to both covering the Asian market from a sales perspective, deploying the AutoDeal LITE service with maximum efficiency, and provision of the highest levels of support post-deployment.”

Softbank, the Japanese Internet investment company, recently increased its shareholding in Cognotec to 17% with a further $20 million investment. Softbank and Cognotec are partners in Forexbank, a joint venture launched in 1999 as an own-branded Internet trading service used primarily by Japanese and Korean banks for their clients.

Cognotec has signed more than 50 banks in 20 countries to AutoDeal LITE since launch.

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