Anthony Saliba returned to the broker-dealer business in September 2017 by starting Matrix Executions. He had sworn he would never would come back to the space. Saliba had already conquered the challenge as CEO of LiquidPoint – which at its peak handled a fifth of American options flow. Liquidpoint would eventually become apart of Dash Financial Technologies in 2017.
Saliba competes with Dash, fighting a battle with a company that can trace part of its history directly back to him.
Now, he has another vote of confidence in his year old venture as Mishkin, Anderson and Gray Securities (MAGS), operator of market making firm Simplex Trading, made him an offer he couldn’t refuse to become minority owners in Matrix. The deal is pending FINRA approval.
For one, Simplex has some pieces of the technology puzzle that will save Matrix build time by simply integrating. Saliba specifically mentioned components of Simplex’s buy side order management system and functionality that allows traders to setup algorithmic strategies triggered by news events. Simplex will also bring it’s “market data prowess to bear.”
But there’s another benefit.
“They’re a strong market participant that gives us liquidity to lean on for price improvement and enhanced execution,” Saliba said.
It’s a new component in an array of overlapping pieces from his old LiquidPoint days as Simplex used to be a client. Saliba has made clear he wants as many of his former clients back, and said that in the past six months a handful made the switch to Matrix. It’s not just the client list — Saliba has some 30 people in his employ, half of which he worked with at LiquidPoint.
When he was revving up to reenter the space, people asked why he would enter such a commoditized business in the midst of an extremely low volatility environment. Needless to say, volatility has returned and the options business is on its way to record volumes 2018.
Should it be surprising that this legendary options trader got his timing right?
(Note: Matrix, unlike LiquidPoint, offers futures, too.)