FNG Exclusive… FNG has learned that longtime LCG CEO and managing partner Charles-Henri Sabet has left LCG, and is now running a new Swiss online trading firm called FlowBank.
The project seems to have attracted a number of former LCG colleagues of Mr. Sabet, including COO Mathieu Bruneau who was LCG’s COO, and FlowBank’s head of research Jasper Lawler. The firm has also tapped a number of former Swissquote employees. Mr. Bruneau, prior to his stint as LCG COO, was with Swissquote for most of the past 10 years. FlowBank Head of Operations William Loy, Head of Quant Haobo Jia, Head of Treasury Francesco Spagnulo, and Head Of Banking Applications Duret Ronny are all either recent Swissquote departures or were longtime Swissquote employees.
Mr. Sabet said of his new venture:
“We intend to bring a new experience by optimizing the world of online banking. Finally a digital solution that allows you to invest via a single multi-currency bank account.”
FlowBank has its headquarters in Geneva’s new Lancy Pont-Rouge business district. FlowBank employs more than 40 specialists who have been present since the start of the project, and the company said it intends to continue to grow through the end of the year.
From a quick perusal of its website, FlowBank seems to be mainly focused on offering leveraged trading in stocks, ETFs, forex, CFDs, and crypto than in offering a pure “Swiss banking” experience.
By starting operations in the fall after obtaining a Swiss banking license in July, FlowBank said it is demonstrating its ambition with an accelerated expansion program for the coming months.
From 2021, the bank said it plans to open new offices in Zurich and internationally.
Mr. Sabet added:
“We are positioning ourselves as the most reliable springboard for our private and institutional clients in their investments.”
As far as the choice of the name FlowBank, the company said that “Flow”, the name and identity of the new bank, refers to a level of maximum concentration which characterizes the athlete or artist who is in total symbiosis with herself or himself. This energetic and positive attitude echoes that of the investor who requires focus and commitment to achieve investing success.
With customer service based in Switzerland, deposit security and FINMA regulatory requirements, FlowBank said it has been established with the “Swiss touch”. Mr. Sabet explained:
“As a result of the increasing digital acceleration, customers nowadays expect quality service more than ever. FlowBank intends to meet this need of both Swiss and international customers.”
“Our value proposition is clear: an investment experience open to everyone, thanks to a mobile app and an optimized platform to deal with all asset classes in domestic and international markets.”
Additional services at FlowBank include a multi-currency account, a payment card and everyday banking transactions.
Furthermore, the FlowBank Research Team said that it will support both new and seasoned investors on a daily basis by highlighting trends and opportunities within financial markets.
As noted above, Charles-Henri Sabet spent the past six years running FCA-regulated, London based Retail FX brokerage London Capital Group (LCG). Mr. Sabet led an investment group that took control of LCG in 2014 and then led a reorganization and rebranding in 2016. However the takeover did not go as planned, as LCG continued to lose money – and market share to incumbents IG and CMC Markets, as well as then-upstart Plus500.