Fimat and Calyon Financial in merger talks

Société Générale and Calyon have entered into exclusive negotiations regarding a possible merger of their brokerage activities, which are currently carried out by Fimat and Calyon Financial respectively.

The newly formed entity would be a world leader in the execution and clearing of listed financial futures and options. This combined group would provide access to more than 70 derivatives exchanges for an international base of institutional clients. It would also be a major player in inter-dealer brokerage of over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives and securities, as well as offering prime brokerage services.

"Fimat and Calyon Financial's combined offer of products and services would apply to a broader client base and would provide significant cross-selling opportunities," Fimat chief executive Nicolas Breteau told Energy Risk. "Our revenue would be more diverse, with more products over a wider geographical area." Société Générale and Calyon would control the proposed new group equally, with headquarters located in Paris.

The merger is the latest in a series of consolidations in the brokerage industries, such as Man Financial's purchase of Refco, and UBS's acquisition of ABN Amro Futures. As Breteau explains, the increasing use of electronic trading is helping to grow derivative volumes - but while volumes are growing, commissions are decreasing, making size critical to success.

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