The foreign exchange market (sometimes known as the forex market or FX market) is a market- place for exchanging foreign currencies. Forex is the world’s largest market, and the deals that take place there has an impact on everything from the cost of apparel imported from Vietnam to the cost of a croissant while on vacation in Europe.
But trading in Forex has been a struggle for most people. Most Forex brokers do not cater well to the needs of their clients. Instead of the brokers trying their best to serve their clients, they make the clients work hard to trade with them. Furthermore, most of the brokers are over-focused on the English-speaking market while ignoring the significant potential in many other countries.
Alarmed by the way many people who wanted to trade the global financial markets were being frustrated by brokers, ATFX was born with the intention of catering to these customers who were frustrated with traditional brokers. It was not an easy road at first, but the founders were committed to creating a broker that prioritised the needs of their clients. Therefore, ATFX was launched in 2017, driven by the desire to democratise access to the financial markets for traders and investors worldwide. The company has since grown from strength to strength to become one of the leading brokers globally. Comparing the 2020 Dec and 2021 Dec trading volumes, ATFX has reported a growth of 76% on Index CFD Volume, and a growth of 266% on Energy/Oil Volume!
The CEOViews team was with Joe Li, Chairman of ATFX, to gain more insights into the business and which direction the management is taking the organisation. Speaking more about the challenges that they are trying to solve at ATFX, Joe Li said that “our priority was to make it easy for investors to open trading accounts and trade the financial markets from wherever they were in the world”. ATFX currently accepts traders from over 150 countries globally, and their focus has now shifted to making the clients’ experience seamless.
Our priority was to make it easy for investors to open trading accounts and trade the financial markets from wherever they were in the world.
They are currently developing products and services to help clients become successful traders and investors. For example, they launched the automated biometric verification (facial recognition) of new clients, making it easier to open new accounts. They also launched the Adobe Sign feature to allow our customers to quickly append their signatures to various official documents. Another significant challenge clients faced was the lack of proper trading education from reliable and experienced sources. They have invested heavily in our trader education programmes to ensure our clients have access to the best trading education available. ATFX also holds frequent webinars where our top-rated analysts guide clients on exploiting the many opportunities present in the markets.
ATFX offers a full suite of trading services to its clients, including access to multiple trading instruments such as forex pairs, indices, commodities, cryptos, and shares. Traders can access more than 300 market instruments via the MT4 trading platform offered by ATFX. On the retail side, they focus on providing clients with access to the different markets via CFDs. One of the crucial ways they use technology to deliver their services is through their training programs. The live webinars are then recorded and available to the clients whenever they need to remember something said during the live webinar.
ATFX also offers clients a demo account that allows them to familiarise themselves with their trading services. Clients can test their trading strategies on the demo account before trading them on their live accounts with actual money.
The MetaTrader 4 (MT4) platform was the first platform that simplified access to the global financial markets for retail traders. Until 2005, when the MT4 platform was launched, retail traders did not have a simple platform to trade the financial markets. The launch of the MT4 platform opened the world’s financial markets up to the masses and was the right software platform at the right time. The platform made it easier for retail traders to access the financial markets, especially the forex markets and gave birth to the retail trading markets.
The MT4 also aided the emergence of numerous brokers serving retail traders, as opposed to the past, when only a few brokers served retail traders. The MT4 platform is extremely popular today. ATFX provides the MT4 platform with add-on and revolutionary features like the ATFX Support and Resistance Indicator, ATFX Position Size Calculator, ATFX Economic Calendar, Trading Central, and Autochartist that are designed for retail traders.
Standing apart from the competition
While there are various other Forex brokers, we were curious to know how ATFX is operating and adding more value to its customers. Responding to the same, Joe Li said, “I would say the main difference between ATFX and its competitors is that we embody our business motto. We have always been obsessed with meeting our customers at their point of need. This has been the primary driving force behind everything we do in our business”.
However, while many companies have a similar motto, few are committed to going the extra mile to align their business operations with their clients’ needs. So they took on the challenge of building a radically different retail Forex brokerage firm focused on the clients’ needs, and this remains the case to date. One can see their commitment to the clients in the innovative products and services they have launched since the beginning. Their venture into the institutional brokerage market via the ATFX Connect service was also driven by their pulsating desire to serve customers. They saw a gap in this highly competitive market. So they launched institutional services to provide tailor-made services to clients such as family offices, high net worth individuals, investment firms, asset managers, private banks and other brokers. They plan to launch more services this year built on the innovative technologies being developed by the IT team. Concluding on this he said, “Therefore, what differentiates ATFX from its competitors is our customer-centric business approach and focus on innovative technologies”.
Innovations at ATFX
Take any company, and its success depends on how much it keeps on bringing innovations to its product or business. And ATFX hasn’t left anything behind on this matter. Innovation is one of their key drivers since they understand the changing nature of the markets and, hence, keep innovating to stay ahead. They also know that innovation allows them to serve their clients better by creating new products that appeal to them. They drive innovation from within the firm, given that they have one of the largest IT teams in the industry. Their IT team comprises 100 highly skilled and motivated individuals who are constantly testing new ideas to find those that resonate best with the clients.
ATFX offers a full suite of trading services to its clients, including access to multiple trading instruments such as forex pairs, indices, commodities, cryptos, and shares.
Some good examples of their innovative nature have already been mentioned earlier in the article, including the biometric verification of new clients and the Adobe Sign functionality. Their ATFX Connect institutional FX brokerage service is another innovative service that takes a different approach than its peers. They have partnered with Celer Tech to create the institutional platform ATFX CONNECT, which is a multi-access platform allowing clients to trade on an Agency, Margin or Bridge account via FIX API or GUI and connect via FIX API, GUI, or Web Trader.
With their technology, clients can leverage the direct market access that ATFX has with several Tier 1 banks and non-bank providers. ATFX Connect creates bespoke aggregated pricing streams in both Spot FX and Gold on a Sweep or Full Amount basis. Eventually, ATFX Connect had reported strong growth of over 500% on total volumes between Q1 2020 and Q1 2021, when the coronavirus pandemic created unprecedented volatility across varying asset classes.
They believe in breaking barriers. Hence, they have tasked their IT team with creating innovative technologies that set them apart from the rest while serving customers. The innovation does not stop there. They recently launched the innovative trading signal and news providing platform “AT Premier” in the Middle East and the ATFX TeamUp social trading app for the Latin American region, and they plan to expand them to other regions. Therefore, innovation is at the core of who ATFX is as a broker.
Culture at ATFX
The work culture within ATFX is built around successful teams that enjoy working together to create positive results for our clients. The management believes that the employees are most productive when working in a fun environment, so they provide one. The management team is keen to ensure that the staff are well taken care of since true happiness is derived from contentment. They constantly ask themselves, “are we taking good care of our employees and are they happy at work”?
ATFX ensures that the workforce has everything one needs to excel at their duties and provide high-quality services to their clients. They are always on the lookout for talented individuals keen on building a career within the financial markets, especially in the retail Forex brokerage industry. ATFX’s management also organises fun team-building events for the employees to get together and have fun. They also have other activities to give back to the communities that they operate in. For example, ATFX usually organises events where employees visit the vulnerable in society, such as homeless people, and donate items to improve their lives. As a responsible broker, ATFX also participates in emergencies like natural disasters like floods, where they donate foodstuffs and other necessities to those affected.
While ATFX has performed well in the past, it would be interesting to see what plans they have for the future. When asked about the manifestation for the future, Joe Li replied, saying, “I would say that the best manifestation of ATFX shortly is to be the broker that serves its clients best. You might be wondering that we’ve already been awarded the “Most Trusted Brand of the Year 2021” and why is it still our main goal? The reason is the fast-changing economy and the trading demands of clients. We will not stop enhancing our products and services, our technologies, and our educational programs to fulfill their needs”.
ATFX’s management team intends to keep moving in the same direction by prioritising the clients’ needs. They will be launching more innovative services to serve clients better in the future. As a broker, they are focused on providing personalised services to their clients via the local support teams in each of the regions they serve. ATFX’s IT team is currently working on multiple projects to cement its leading position in the Forex brokerage industry.
Further speaking on the same, Joe said, “We have a simple roadmap guided by our mission to democratise access to the Forex markets globally.” We are also keen on building our institutional offering under ATFX Connect as we revolutionise the institutional brokerage industry. Our approach with ATFX Connect has been to provide our institutional clients with bespoke services tailored to their exact needs. We intend to double down on this strategy since it works great for us. All in all, we are gearing up for a great year at ATFX, where we expect growth in all aspects of our business.
So far, the organisation has been moving on the right track, and they intend to keep going until most people know that ATFX is the go-to broker if one wants the most customer-centric services. This is their long-term objective, and everything they do is based on this single vision. They are looking forward to a prosperous 2022 for their clients as ATFX continues working on the shared vision of the Forex markets.