Cognotec, the Dublin-based e-finance technology vendor, has announced a new joint venture aimed at promoting its Internet-based FX and money market trading solutions in the Republic of Korea. Cognotec has teamed up with Softbank Finance Corporation and Korea’s Posdata Company to launch Cognotec Korea. The move follows Cognotec’s recent expansion into Japan, which was also part-funded by Softbank. Separately, Softbank has bought an additional $10 million of Cognotec equity, making it the vendor’s largest external investor with a 31% equity stake.
“Cognotec Korea aims to exploit Cognotec’s e-commerce enabling services to provide Korean financial institutions with real-time executable foreign exchange and money market trading solutions,” says a Cognotec spokesperson. “E-commerce has expanded rapidly in Korea. According to the Korean government, roughly 45% of the population use the Internet regularly. This, together with the liberalisation of both the won and the Korean financial marketplace, suggest there will be a significant increase in local demand for online trading of foreign currencies.”
Posdata, the Korean partner in the joint venture, is the IT and systems integration subsidiary of Posco, the Korean steel production group. Softbank Finance is a subsidiary of Softbank Corporation, a major technology investor and the largest shareholder in Yahoo! And E*Trade. Softbank Finance has an ongoing programme of investing some $100 million in Cognotec, $60 million of which has been invested so far.