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Virtu’s Shay Takes New Role at Nasdaq

John Shay, most recently a partner at Virtu Financial, is joining Nasdaq as global head of fixed income, commodities and clearing, reporting to Hans-Ole Jochumsen, president of Nasdaq. Shay takes up his New York-based role in late October.

Shay spent most of his career with ICAP (Icap) before being recruited by Virtu’s founder, Vincent Viola, in 2007. At Virtu, Shay was responsible for managing all outside venue, vendor and trading relationships, including all prime and FCM counterparties, as well as all exchange, ECN and ATS relationships with a focus on fixed income, currencies and commodities. He also sat on Virtu’s Executive Committee and served in the Global Markets group. A successor has not yet been named.

Outside of Virtu, Shay served as a member of the Foreign Exchange Professionals Association (FXPA) board, Nasdaq Market Advisory Committee and the Treasury Borrowing Advisory Committee (TBAC).

Prior to Virtu, Shay was founder and served as chief marketing officer of IDCG, which was sold to LCH in August 2012.

Before founding IDCG, he spent nearly 25 years managing various businesses for ICAP (Icap). From 2003 to 2007, he was executive vice president and global head of sales for Icap Electronic Broking (IEB) for fixed income and foreign exchange. He worked to integrate the BrokerTec business (which IEB acquired in May 2003) and to drive market share in US Treasuries, mortgage backed products, and repo. He was also involved in integrating global sales efforts with EBS (which IEB acquired in June 2006); concentrating in spot FX, forward FX, emerging market FX and precious metals.

Given Shay’s long track record with Icap and its IEB businesses, sources speculate that a bid for the new Icap business, NEX (Nex), could be within Nasdaq’s purview, at long last giving the exchange a leg into the OTC world that it has sought. Nasdaq attempted to build its FX footprint in mid-2013, but put its FX trading and clearing plans on hold earlier this year.

Nex will be the new company housing the electronic trading and post-trade parts of the business that remain of Icap following the spin-off of its voice broking business to Tullett Prebon, due for completion by the end of this year. Nex, which will include EBS BrokerTec among other parts of the business such as Traiana and TriOptima, will start formally operating the day after the Tullett deal completes.

As noted in P&L managing editor Colin Lambert’s column last November: “Previously, we have generally discounted the idea of one of the major exchange groups buying the firm because Icap was such a big business. It is a smaller firm now, one that provides the targeted services in demand in the modern market from so many players across the trade cycle. By effectively cutting off the peripheral (as far as many exchange groups are concerned) voice business, Icap has suddenly made its electronic businesses not only more attractive to potential buyers, but also a little cheaper.”

Michelle Hemstedt

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