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    WIKIFX REPORT: Exness prepares for major African expansion after receiving FSP licence

    Abstract:Group already has 145 000 active traders around the world.
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      Given the number of crypto and forex trading scams in SA over the last two years, Exness decided its time to help spruce up the image of the industry.

      You can go to its website where it discloses its trading volumes, number of active clients, client withdrawals, client funds on deposit and the company‘s own funds – $131 million (R1.9 billion) as of December 2019. It’s refreshing to see this level of candour from a broker.

      “Retail and professional traders want to know who they are dealing with, so we decided to make full disclosure of all our key business and financial stats. Its all available on our website,” says Paul Margarites, commercial director sub-Saharan Africa for Exness.

      The company was recently granted a financial services provider (FSP) licence by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA), paving the way for major expansion in South Africa and other African markets.

      We spoke to Margarites to learn more about Exness and its plans for the future.

      1. How long have you been in operation?

      Exness was established in 2008. We are a global online broker with 145 000 active traders around the world, and weve been operating in Africa for some time. The granting of an FSP licence by the FSCA is huge for us, as it allows us to expand our presence in SA and across the continent. The Exness group has multiple licences and offices, including in Cyprus, the UK, Seychelles and others, and now SA. Exness is expanding to new jurisdictions in tandem with an active licensing plan.

      2. What does the FSCA licence mean for your business?

      The FSCA licence is of great significance to us. Our customer base in Africa is substantial and growing steadily.

      African investors and traders are discerning in terms of the broker they use – there is a new breed of educated trader looking for brokers they can trust and grow with. This FSCA licence has been a key focus for us, as it establishes that element of trust that traders are looking for.

      South Africa is our main market in Africa, but sub-Saharan Africa is potentially massive for Exness in general. People across the continent can trade virtually, no matter where they are, and Exness is able to offer them the same highly functional trading platform and low costs, with 24/7 support, that customers receive anywhere else in the world.

      3. What market are you targeting – day traders, professionals, DIY investors, all of the above?

      The trading market has evolved in the last 10 to 15 years and has, without doubt, become more sophisticated. Im a professional institutional trader by background, so I come from that background of very high standards, and disciplined trading.

      The market we are aiming at include scalpers, position traders, swing traders, part-timers, and professionals.

      All of these traders might have different time scales, and they have different requirements from a broker. Some want very high leverage, so we offer unlimited for standard accounts and up to 2 000% for professional accounts. Virtually everyone wants a very simple funds deposit and withdrawal process. We offer instant withdrawals through a variety of different methods, from bank transfers to mobile phones.

      Our costs are very low, and we offer zero spreads for certain types of professional accounts, with low minimum deposits of $1 for retail investors to $500 for professionals.

      Customer support is also excellent, with 24/7 support in English and other languages, and most importantly, a team of professionals keen to support clients along the way.

      We also publish tick data, so you can see where a certain instrument traded at a certain time in the day. This is very important in offering complete transparency to our traders.

      4. What distinguishes a good from a bad trader?

      My answer to that question is different now to what I would have said 10 years ago. Previously I would have argued that an unsuccessful trader doesnt have the right information, the costs are too high and the spreads are too wide.

      Thats all changed. Everyone has access to the same fundamental and technical information today.

      For people who arent succeeding today, it comes down to more personal trading habits. Those who succeed are disciplined and follow a strict daily, weekly or monthly plan. They place stop-losses to prevent losses running away from them. They know when to take profits. The more disciplined and structured the trader, the better their success.

      There are some factors in SA that can introduce problems for a trader, for example load shedding or unstable internet. Weve overcome that by offering a Virtual Private Server (VPS) free to our clients with a certain minimum deposit. They can place their orders directly on our server, which eliminates issues such as slow internet and load shedding.

      5. You have 107 currency pairs, 40 stocks and indices, and you also offer crypto and commodities. Are there any plans to expand this and what are your most popular instruments for trading?

      Gold is one of the most popular instruments we offer, but cryptos like bitcoin are also gaining in popularity. Were adding instruments all the time. We have a product and development team that expands our offering and improves trading conditions on an ongoing basis.

      We also offer products that are specifically requested by our traders and tailored to their needs.

      For example, a lot of people like to trade the Nasdaq, but some people like to trade this in larger contract sizes than are typically available, so we have introduced USTEC_x100, which is the Nasdaq in contract sizes of 100 rather than 1.

      We‘ve also removed swap fees on gold CFDs [contracts for difference, a type of derivative instrument], making it cheaper to invest in gold without all the hassles of physical ownership. We’re always adding new instruments, and we currently offer a range of cryptos, commodities and indices, with our range of instruments continuing to grow.

      6. How else do you differentiate yourself from other brokers?

      Most brokers these days are offering low trading costs, and efficient trade execution, though I would say we do it better than most. What really puts us in a different category is our transparency, as I already mentioned, and our reliability as a broker. We fully disclose our business stats to you. For example, we had over $270 million in client withdrawals in the last quarter of 2020. You can see how our business is growing, and the volume of client funds on deposit with us, as well as our own funds. Thats important information for clients to know. It gives them a sense of trust and honesty.

      7. What are your plans for the near future?

      Watch this space. Now that we have our licence, we really are focusing on Africa and on continuing the good work globally. All I can say is we are about to expand substantially in Africa.

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