The dominating story of the FX industry news week was the unfolding drama involving GKFX, the largest Retail FX group with its roots in Turkey.
We began by exclusively reporting that the company’s London based CEO (of its FCA regulated operation) Iain Rogers had suddenly resigned from the company. After some digging, we then discovered (and reported) that a number of the company’s former high ranking executives had been arrested following a police raid in Istanbul. And then finally, we revealed that the police in Turkey had discovered a $29 million fraud against the company perpetrated by those former executives.
More on each of those stories follows below.
But there was of course more in the news as well. From the departure of Forex.com’s CRO, to Saxo Bank (finally) launching crypto trading in some jurisdictions, to ETX Capital making its first post-acquisition senior hire in Cyprus, all the week’s top stories appeared first or exclusively at FNG.
Some of the top FX industry news stories to appear this week on FNG included:
GKFX update: Former executives arrested for stealing from the company. FNG Exclusive… Further to our earlier coverage that six executives of GKFX had been arrested in Turkey for what police suspect is a $29 million fraud, FNG has spoken to several parties involved in the matter and received more clarification regarding what did (and what didn’t) happen. First, we feel it important to note that no client money was stolen. The parties arrested are suspected of stealing about $29 million in 2020 from GKFX’s parent company, Global Kapital Group. The police action came as a direct result of GKFX’s ownership and its current management working with authorities to identify those responsible, and bring them to justice. Despite the theft, GKFX and its parent company Global Kapital Group remain well capitalized, and operating normally.
Six GKFX executives arrested in Turkey in suspected $29M fraud. Further to our exclusive coverage from earlier today that GKFX UK CEO Iain Rogers had left the company, news outlets in Turkey are reporting that six of GKFX’s Istanbul based executives have been arrested by Turkish police. According to several news outlets in the country including Sozcu and NTV, Turkish police raided GKFX’s offices in the Maslak business district of Istanbul earlier this week and arrested six of the company’s executives, identified only as MKY, BK, CÖ, VS, SE, and RE. Police are suspecting that the executives were involved in embezzling $29 million in funds at the company. The Sozcu site posted a video of police (supposedly) raiding GKFX’s offices, hauling out large amounts of cash.
Exclusive: Iain Rogers out as CEO of GKFX. FNG Exclusive… FNG has learned that FCA regulated FX and CFDs broker GKFX Financial Services Ltd has seen the departure of Executive Director Iain Rogers. Iain Rogers had joined GKFX in 2019, at a time when the UK company was phasing out Retail FX to focus on becoming an institutional and professional-trader broker. The company adopted the GKPro brand in the UK, and “moved” its GKFX retail FX brand to an EU based (Malta) subsidiary AKFX Financial Services Ltd. Those changes led to a £9 million 2019 loss for GKFX UK. (The company hasn’t yet released 2020 results). Mr. Rogers’ departure continues something of a revolving door phenomenon in the CEO suite at GKFX. Before joining GKFX Iain Rogers was briefly at GMI-UK, served as Managing Director of Pepperstone UK (2017-2019), and was CEO of Admiral Markets UK (2015-2017).
Saxo Markets set to launch crypto FX. FNG Exclusive… Multi-asset trading expert Saxo Markets is about to expand its offering via the launch of crypto FX paired with bitcoin, litecoin and more. The company is advertising the upcoming launch of the service to clients in several of the regions where it is active, such as Australia and Singapore. It is apparent that due to regulations in certain regions, the service will not be available everywhere where Saxo is present. Earlier this month, Saxo said it was launching a new theme basket focusing on crypto and blockchain companies.
Beyond the aforementioned departure of Iain Rogers from GKFX, other top FX industry executive moves reported at FNG this week were:
❑ Exclusive: ETX beefs up Cyprus marketing adding FXTM alum Kyriakos Paisanos.
❑ Exclusive: FOREX.com CRO Tim O’Sullivan leaves as StoneX consolidates risk.
❑ Exclusive: Pepperstone adds Sportsbet vet Victor Nguyen as Head of Marketing Science.
❑ Interactive Brokers names Michael McClain as Director of Client Operations, North America.
❑ Broadway Technology names Claudia Cantarella as Chief Legal Officer.
❑ Blackstone appoints Yifat Oron as head of the firm’s new office in Tel Aviv.