The long rumored merger between the Futures Industry Association (FIA) and Futures & Options Association (FOA) was finally announced last month at the IDX Conference in London. The newly merged entity, called FIA Global, will serve as the international umbrella group for FIA, FIA Europe (formerly FOA) and FIA Asia.
John Lothian News editor-in-chief Jim Kharouf spoke with FIA president and CEO Walt Lukken and FOA CEO Anthony Belchambers at the IDX conference in June about the merger, why they decided to make the move and what it brings to their memberships.
With the new entity, executives say they will be able to better address regulatory issues that are facing the futures industry. It will address items on the regulatory agenda such as: cross-border issues, a fragmented regulatory landscape, as well as the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) and International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) benchmarks and standards. FIA Global executives added that other issues such as segregation of client money and extraterritoriality will be on the agenda as well.
Lukken says that memberships at FIA and FOA will not change and Belchambers says that given the global nature of the industry and the regulatory push, the new organization can better allocate resources to those issues around the globe. The goal for the organization is simple, provide one voice that reflects and represents the derivatives industry.
The deal has been approved by the boards of FIA and FOA, with a membership vote slated for FOA members on July 24. The new FIA Global will be registered in Delaware. The new board of directors for FIA Global is still to be determined.